Afternoon, Waiting in A Future Nursing Home


There will be many more of these afternoons of waiting--

Waiting for the nurse, waiting for the serving tray, waiting for the day to end.


Waiting can be good, instructive.

Waiting can be a dark devil, tempting despair.

Waiting can be a tool, an extra organ of sorts,

Used nimbly to bead out the counting of the afternoon's time.


Morning waiting is better than afternoon waiting.

Morning staff, more caring, more rested, livelier,

Freshly come from their commute and their home lives.

Afternoon staff have had their rest disturbed,

Their projects interrupted, and

They are already tired and dreading the foaming of night.


Both morning and afternoon staff share this:

A resolve not to come to this place,

With its waiting-filled afternoons

When they get old.


--June 10, 2013