Everyone is down-low relieved
All the shouting and frantic
Bustling can finally cease.
We all back slowly away from the gurney.
Time of death, four thirty-three.
It's quite a mess.
Blood like spilt wine
On the gray linoleum floor.
A pale bloated body exposed
Under phosphorescent lights.
Tubes jutting from orifices.
The smell of urine and shit.
A nurse goes to get a blanket.
It isn’t like the movies or even TV
Where the dead are shocked back to life.
It generally ends like this:
Cracked ribs, split lips
The guy on chest compressions
Bent over gasping against a wall.
A newly dead body is a colorless rainbow
Arching across space in the expected pattern
But drained of all defining hues.
Not quite white, not quite blue
Death only seems inevitable once it’s here.
The corpse is covered.
The doors are closed
To seal the tomb
By the last person to leave.
Then the idle chatter resumes
In the spaces outside the silent room.
Monitors start beeping again.
Everything is in motion again.
EMT's usher in new arrivals
That are accepted like droplets of rain.
About the body, nothing more is said
We've returned to the living
And the not quite dead.
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