A Young Man Recovers by John Grey

It’s dawn.
I’m limp as a dead rabbit.
But the fever’s sweated
its way out of me.
My breath no longer burns.
The sheets, the pillow,
are glad to see me.
I realize I won’t die
and the lingering ache
brings out a smile.

Light beams in.
makes the association
with my healing clear.
Others in the house are rising.
I’m a day or two away
from joining them.

I can imagine myself
pole-vaulting to a new record
or playing the violin
for hours on end.
And I have never pole-vaulted
or played the violin
in my life.

And now my body’s out of harm,
I can even get into trouble again.
My parents, my siblings, can see that coming.

Another tattoo.
A drunken night out.
A fight with my girl.
An argument with the old man.

That’s the worst thing about sickness.
It takes me away
from what’s wrong with me.

©2018 John Grey


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John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in the Homestead Review, Poetry East and Columbia Review with work upcoming in Harpur Palate, the Hawaii Review and North Dakota Quarterly.


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