Wendeline Wright poetry

“Surprise Endings”

in the summer
he was fine
still mobile, looking
well, pushing
through treatment

and when he failed
he failed fast,
we stood aside and murmured—
as if loud words
could kill him faster—

because his eyes
wouldn’t close, his
gaze full of terror
and locked
to the ceiling,
hands clawed

when he was still verbal
he moaned
“I didn’t think
it would end like this” and
I smiled and grabbed his
fading hands and said
“at 88 surrounded by
loved ones?
we should all be so lucky”

how could he
not have known