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Poetry and Medicine
August 22/29, 2012

Torsades de Pointes

Author Affiliations

Poetry and Medicine Section Editor: Charlene Breedlove, Associate Editor. Poems may be submitted to jamapoems@jamanetwork.org.

Author Affiliation: Medical Faculty Associates, George Washington University, Washington, DC (apossner@mfa.gwu.edu).

JAMA. 2012;308(8):745. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.3647

     torsades de pointes
like most French words
they sound refined
     torsades de pointes
        unlike vtach
        prolonged QT
     torsades de pointes
like the classics
a painting by
Monet    Degas
     torsades de pointes
        unlike scribbles
        outside the lines
        my kid could do
     torsades de pointes
like a fine food
foie gras    soufflé
quiche    escargot
     torsades de pointes
        unlike fast food
        canned beans    burnt toast
        cold leftovers
     torsades de pointes
like love and life
crème de la crème
a tour de force
     torsades de pointes
        unlike the death
        the coup de grâce
        it really is
     torsades de pointes
like a ballet
twisting around
the true meaning
     torsades de pointes
        unlike two pads
        a high-pitched whine
        two hundred joules