Draw me a clock

by Beth Hanson, MS2

“…Crickets in my ears…”

“Your arm. Straight.
Feet on the ground. Flat. Please.”

Yellow smelling room. Stale. Color hanging in the air
like bony fingers strangling my throat.
Harshly squeezing my carotids.

“…They bark. At night...”

“Please. Your arm. Keep still.”

“…The birds. I hear them bark...”

Paper gown crinkling, crackling,
like soap suds popping
in the kitchen drain.

“…Hoppity hoppity hop.
Birdieee. Birdieeeeee…”

Chilled breath of the tile floor,
clawing its way
through my bones.

“…Doctor, do I have the feathers?...”

“110 over 80. Write that down.”

“…Feathers. I have the feathers.
They chirp…

Blank stare. Empty space in the room.
Time tunnel
perhaps.

“…Shhhhhhhhh
it’s the dementia…”

“Draw me a clock with hands at 11:00.”

Tight air. Rubber banded.
Saran wrap stretched
across my face.

“Please the clock. Draw the clock.”

“…Doctor do they chirp?
Something in my ear…”

Silence and a cricket
lying softly
in the corner.