Inside Out

July 1, 1998
Volume 15, Issue 4

Inside Out

Still fresh
with the smell of aftershave
he sprawls in bed,
seersucker johnny worn backwards.
Plane & Pilot sits
wrapped in a plastic sleeve.
He knows the date, the hospital,
can name Clinton, Bush, Reagan.
Ribbons lie on his nightstand
where a gift box holds a paisley robe,
one sleeve pulled inside out.
He lifts the box,
studies the puzzle his robe has become,
panics; his eyes ricochet
from mine to the robe
then suddenly he lunges an arm
at the pulled-in sleeve.
Another lunge, another,
his arm slides into air
as he shoves me away,
two men alone in a room,
helpless to reverse one sleeve
in a world pulled inside out.

© CME LLC
7/98

Read more of Dr. Berlin's work.