The Final Cut

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Did they get enough from me
With the deftness of a surgeon?
Were my borders clean and neat
Or does my destiny include
A shorter life of restless false religion?
I once built walls and set my boundaries
But with a deadly diagnosis
It’s difficult to know where I start and end
Was my deciding even taken
Into consideration
When my rough edges showed
Everything the doctors need to know?
Hey I thought you said you’d cure me
But you’ll never get it all
And will you even tell me when it’s been enough
When will you make the final cut?
I’m lopsided and can’t stand straight
And I can’t walk with a proud gait.
When I cross the threshold
And I leave the world alone
My body broken, scarred and frayed
Knowing this will never go away
Cancer’s on mind today and
Sits on the tip of my tongue
Like the words that chemo stole
Now cancer’s breath is in my lungs.
Cancer’s legions shot my liver
And advise me to forgive myself
Because the remedies you gave to me
Contribute to my demise
Just like the words you shouldn’t say
Like don’t worry you’ll win this
You’re strong enough
I’ll pray for you
I’m in this too
And then you disappear
Leaving hollow words ringing in my ears.
Over cancer I’ve cried rivers
And I’ve cried myself an ocean, I can cry myself asleep
And live happily in my dreams
On a magical boat
On which I’ll live forever out to sea
But I’ll always be remote
I’m in an island you can’t see.
But was there ever a time when I wasn’t sailing on —
That final cuts so deep
Just like water under the bridge.
And every drop I drink
Of water carried me away
To a sunny place where
Pain didn’t contort my face.
I can’t recall anymore
Was there ever a day
When I wasn’t in disarray?
I know I’ll never get to win
Yet I’ll get to see the end
Of this dice game in some
Dark alley where the danger
Fits me like a stranger sneaking
Up behind me with a scythe in his hand
Ready to slit my throat and unbind me
From this tortured body and release my soul.
Here on this cloudless beautiful new day
I’ll never know if I ever showed you
I loved you dear body of mine
It’s all going to be fine
No matter the outcome
You held me in your care the best you could.
Just take your time heal yourself
I’ll heal my mind and heal this soul
When it’s time I’ll let it go
And let the heavens bring my spirit home.
Then please take me to god
(if there is one anyway)
On this earth or somewhere in the sky
And for whatever it is worth
when I die I hope I reach Nirvana
Because my confusion never ends
The pain, the sorrow, this misery
The cuts, the wounds, the bruises, the gashes
But there’s just not enough
My losses keep adding up.
Like the punches thrown at me
that I duck and I missed by a breath
But I lost those fights in six rounds of radiation and now
I found just what it means to be eaten away from the inside out.
And will the last time I take a breath
Will I breathe the air of a dusty treasure chest?
When will I’ll know it’s enough to lay me down to rest?
So please don’t cry for me
As I fly away, I promise
I’ll be right back from the final cut
Out in this universe of discontent
Oh cry me a river, or cry me a stream
I’ll sail away far off in your nightly dreams
Just remember I loved you
And remember I was here remember every day
remember every year remember all the tears
I cried and when I died
remember all those days
I held you in my heart
I loved you don’t be taken
By surprise when you close your eyes at night and dream of me and see my face and touch my cheek and don’t know why I was ever there
You’ll reach over and I’ll be gone call me out
you said you couldn’t play
but I needed you so much
on a day much like today
so don’t ever think I disappeared
Even though I won’t be here
I’ll always be here see me clearly
I loved this life so dearly
Until the final cut.

3 comments on “The Final Cut”

    1. Thank you my friend. I appreciate it. It’s a very raw poem unlike many I write. It started out as a song but I can’t write music so here it is!

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