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A Nurse's Apology

Its the silence I am surrounded by,
a hundred people,
waiting patiently to die.
Their little rooms of beds,
neat little rooms,
colors full of life,
so contradictory to  the reality. 
Silence now as they sleep,
one day bleeding into another.
Do they even realize death approaches?
We fill their days with pain meds,
and children's games.
We fill their heads with love,
and hope wasted.
Silence is our only real offering of comfort.
To be the onlookers to aging,
we feel gifted.
We are given a glimpse into our futures,
laying in a cold bed,
a room filled with colors and death,
wondering, if we can, when the last exhalation will come. 
Now sitting here in the dark, early morning,
I fail to see the beauty and hope in this scene.
I see reality in this old flickering tube lighting,
I see the aseptic, clinical side of death.
And for all the lies I tell them, 
for all the false hope I bring,
for all the bright, unnatural smiles I give,
I am sorry.
I see reality here in my dark hallway,
listening to a hundred dying breaths.
I am a witness to death.
And I thank God I am on this side.



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