Shadows at the Edge of Light

15 years ago, I lay dying
Grasping at my family’s final farewells
drifting over my shrinking 80 pounds
odd nonsensical medical codes lingering in my last air:
bp 50 over diastolic, and falling,Doctor.
nurses whispering, “she won’t make it, not even through the hour.”

I rallied, though, from my brother’s insistent, distant directive,
“You have to fight against the night, you know. every hour. fight.”
I did

leaving the hospital, I heard more whispers
“she’ll not make it, not even through the week.”
I did.

10 years ago the doctor frowned
as I slipped shaky and fragile from his towering Denver office,
“it doesn’t look good, you may not make it through the year.”

8 years ago, my heart still aching, the cardiologist sighed,
“You’ll live, but you’ll never run again. You’ll never work again.
You may not see your 40th birthday.”

years ago, I skipped past his office with my Master’s Degree in hand
Just to prove him wrong.

the Miracle of me is that I wake each morning
stumbling to stretch a tiny hole in the iron bubble
that threatens to surround me
laughing at this
chubby body.
every hour within it, a luxury.

And I fight
I fight enriched by all those
who have told me what I could not survive
And I fight for all of these who have been told
that they would never succeed
that they could never make it
Not even through one more day.

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