Test Anxiety

Lee Hong, MD/PhD year 3, Undecided

Dream Weaver,

when I lay down to sleep

and curl myself up

and close my eyes at last from the glow and the glare,

have your hands at the ready, the needle threaded.

 

For once I do,

your tapestry is unwound,

and in its place my clumsy hands knit

the ragged twine

of my feeble attempts

to learn

the labs,

the steroids,

the endless symptoms.

The “clinical pictures” dictated on pages,

now held by these pathetic strands,

crumpled in the dark and damp abscesses of my brain.

 

It… was my dream to be a medical student.

 

So Weaver, can you spin a different thread tonight?

For my days are drawn thin.

Minute by minute, I see these letters arranged in various combinations

and try to remember.

Remember… and to know.

 

I know the warmth of my mother’s smile

and the shades of sunlit sky.

 

Maybe one day, these words will no longer be unpalatable boluses,

but visceral,

a more instinctive reality,

a memory.

 

Dream Weaver, one day you’ll laugh and remind me

what it’s like to see your work laid out before you,

to relish what your hands have made.

But tonight… please, spare me from this ocean of knowledge I’m drowning in.

Take pity at my gasping breaths.

For I am tired of treading water,

and for once,

I will let you…

…pick up where I left off.