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Poetry and Medicine
July 14, 2004

Afferent Receptors

Author Affiliations

Poetry and Medicine Section Editor: Charlene Breedlove, Associate Editor.

JAMA. 2004;292(2):152. doi:10.1001/jama.292.2.152

(for Sue)

Six months, amiga, since your so-called death
I still expect the phone will ring
some cloudless morning and spill a litany
of your laughter in my ear. I merely
close my eyes to see you dancing
at the water's edge, feel
your parting hug, inhale the scent
of your hair, taste the salt
in my tears. I watched your family
scoop the dirt into your grave
by hand. Help me in my disbelief. Perhaps
one day I'll make sense of it. For now
it's my sixth sense, not explained
in any text, that keeps you near.