The Consultant (Revelation, first draft)

First, the over-quiet room where we sat together

Waiting, quiet as all the others – waiting

Until she left me for the first time…

Then I was called


As he spoke the shock hit, solid as a punch;

Left me breathless, faint, unmanned;

So obviously lost that chair and water came

And briefly the patient was I – not her.


Then my mind began to grasp the truth it had shunned;

Clarity returned with the grave timbre of his voice –

Inflected to ask: How could I not have seen or guessed

The destiny she had known so long.


How did she stand the months in which the pain was hers alone?

After all those many years, my failure to feel –

My hiding from the very possibility of that horror –

Still strikes: so hard as that first blow.


We became blind to other futures

We were one union of body, heart and soul

I lived within her and she within me: one mind, one thought,

But I did not comprehend her need, nor she mine

She left,

            and I live on knowing the chasm of that failure

◄ Revelation

Wilderness 2001, 2021 ►


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Cynthia Buell Thomas

Sun 23rd Jul 2017 12:19

This is a fine poem, personally gripping and hard-hitting. It highlights so clearly a situation that could belong to any one of us, in our ignorance, or selfishness. A very good 'heads up'.

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