• by Deborah Guzzi

The Red Road


Windblown, rain-born, mothers with children, their aged parents, arm-hung, basket-carried, free pedaling, four-legged, or three-legged, parade forward shunted through electric door to doctors.

Bundled up, tied-down, birthers rush down antiseptic hallways. Each patient encapsulated in the flow of life or death, the infirm helpless to resist oncoming scrutiny are side-tracked by the growing-up or winding-down ones.

Helpers like strands of DNA shuttle-cock through arteries, and veins, dusting, adjusting, forewarning, the pale drug-dreamers, the fever-ruddy, or bone-weary, to the hmmm, buzz, and gong of machines.

And though, illness surfs these weakened shells, love like a lozenge allays the advent of fear. For some life has just begun, for most this weary weakness, life, is a double-edged sword gifting kindness with pain.

Published November 9, 2019 on the Ancient Paths Facebook page

2019 Pushcart Prize Nominee

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