On the sofa you are rounded beneath
your afghan, knees drawn toward
the source of your fever. The room
wavers with your heat. And this
is where I come in, blue around the lips
and bent by the darkness of this mid-
afternoon. Between the hallway’s doors,
I bang the snow from my boots, shake
the weather from the wool vaults
of my hat and coat. Even so, I move
toward you like a storm. But if I am
a specter of winter’s frozen gloom,
you never let on, and reaching
for my hands, you offer to warm them.
Over the years of my home visits as a Medical Social Worker, I was constantly amazed and grateful to the patients I had the privilege to serve.
The poem here attempts to capture the generosity of our patients, despite their illness or isolation or overwhelming needs … in this case, a visit on a miserable, stormy, mid-winter day.
Old Saybrook Poet Laureate