Hospital de São José – Graveyard Shift

Just another night in the ER
or so I thought.

On a cigarette break,
after a visceral encounter,
where one couldn’t distinguish 
liver from kidney,
I light up a cigarette.

The noxious fumes already invading my lungs,
I exhale.
That precious, addictive, 
soothing taste,
took me away to a different place.

I kept staring at the floor.
There’s nothing more peaceful, 
or more real, 
than the ground,
you walk on.

Without looking up, 
I contemplated on death
and how quickly we fall to its grasp.
We are made of paper,
the wind our master.

Another young life was lost,
the earth would be feasting again soon.

The silence was deafening,
this couldn’t be,
for screaming and crying,
were more than expected.
I look up.
Instead of the crows of desperation,
and the screams of sadness,
I see a giant teddy bear.

I checked my cigarette for hidden drugs,
I cleaned my glasses,
and the bear was still standing there.
More interesting than that,
was the fact that people didn’t seem to care,
nor give it a second look.
Amidst all the drama,
and all the violence,
a behemoth of a stuffed animal,
standing still outside of an ER,
wasn’t enough anymore,
to make people wonder.

It was awkward. 
I lit another cigarette,
and I waited.
Ten minutes had gone by,
ambulances came,
more patients
but no one seem to notice,
the leviathan in the scenery.
I picked up my phone,
and immortalized it.

I tried to understand,
to figure it out
but I couldn’t.
There was no emotion, 
only the lack of.
How could that lifeless,
yellow and red figure,
seem more alive than everyone else?

I concluded then,
there could be no light
in the abyss.
No emotions in the chasm of suffering,
and death. 
Only the lack of,
only Apathy.

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