[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
Citations 0
Poetry and Medicine
April 20, 2011


Author Affiliations

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

JAMA. 2011;305(15):1517. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.341

Hope floats? The samaras
rather spin, a whole
squadron gusting from
the maple, whirling madly
as teacups, then flung
flat to stone, or tilting
from clover, each alone
as the helicopter
desert-wrecked, the dervish
blade shushed in sand.
Hope spins more than floats,
pedals, sprockets, spokes
all frantically turning
as the father lets go
his strong steady hand
to wave, breathless, and grow
smaller, or as a minor
planet wobbles upon
its solitude, sweeping
the vast dark, glacier-bright
as it curls past the sun,
then slung away again,
sapphire, violet, black,
the air too thin to carry
a shout or cry. Hope spins.