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Richard M. Berlin, MD

Richard M. Berlin, MD

Richard M. Berlin, MD, is Senior Affiliate in Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. His second collection of poems, Secret Wounds, which won the 2010 John Ciardi Poetry Prize, is published by BkMk Press. Email: Richard.Berlin@gmail.com.

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Dawn is at five, but I sleep past nine, not caring if I miss a few warblers flying home for summer...

That’s how he’d like to go, he tells me, not by this slow seeding of liver and spine, not with all the tears and long good-byes.

The Big Bad Wolf and Wicked Witch liked to creak the stairs by her bedroom door and wake her from dreams calling, “Daddy!”

I’m driving home from the ER, not ready for sleep, eaten up by memories of my mistakes...

We’ve been meeting since his PSA spiked and he decided on surgery. Radiation finished, nerves nicked by the robot...

After a managed care company calls me to be “a prescriber,” I recall The Book of Dinosaurs my grandfather gave me the day I turned seven.

It's always a brain tumor when I have a headache. “Don’t be crazy,” I tell myself, “You’re just inventing a doctor-mind catastrophe.”

Fifty Shrinks allows us to see ourselves through the sensitive eyes of a colleague and artist.

When I learned my first scale at 45 I knew I would never rip loose and free like the pros who started as teenagers, when time didn’t matter and practicing was just another form of play.

I begin by remembering my hours as a patient and Freud’s “Fundamental Rule”: Say Whatever Comes to Mind...

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