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At the Clinic

He sat behind his computer

eyeing his cup of tea and biscuit

‘card number’ he grunted

a nurse came in without knocking

‘Doctor there’s a child, his leg injured

please see him without an appointment

it’s so far to the hospital, you

can squeeze him in I’m sure’


He took my card swiped it

‘You see this list’, he waved

a page of names at her, ‘Fifty patients,

the regulations eyeing his tea

‘Send him to the emergency room’


‘A child, Doctor’ she said, ‘he’s crying’

- he belched, muttered ‘irregular

let him wait until I finish the list’


When I was eighteen I wanted to

be a doctor – to help people’, I told

them – my application was not approved

‘You’re lucky’, my mother said

‘They get you out of bed after midnight

you’d never get a good night’s sleep’.

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© Johnmichael Simon



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