Bloodletting

The nurse didn’t see fit to tell me until later that I had bled all over arm, armrest, and

the corner of my sweatshirt.  She could tell, I suspect, that I was a little green,

and so withheld until it was over.

Then she called another nurse over to mop me up,

While I looked the other way and breathed deeply.

Still, I knew.

It’s not the needle, really.

For Cam it is.  He went pale on the way to the snack table and had to be bolstered up

and ushered over to a corner cot.

For me, it’s the bloodletting.  The concept of draining blood,

independent of instruments used.

It’s the bag full of warm blackness, which the nurses toss around like it’s a water balloon.

It’s the stacks and stacks of them, sorted and labeled and shipped away.

And so when I spurted (when the needle was removed, or so I am told),

It was too much.

I was a carcass draining, and it was too much.

Naturally, I fainted, even before I could make a joke about Find Me My Smelling Salts.

 

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