Visiting my father
by Elizabeth Irving-Waddleton

    Dragged in by medics in white coats:
    ___Leave me alone you Colonel Sanders!
    Taken away in a straitjacket.

    The hospital's scaly walls shudder,
    _________a sympathetic rhythm.

    Connie hobbles in slippers through the halls.
    ___I can't talk. I can't talk. I can't talk.
    Shuffledrag murmur walk.

    Convinced that all orange cars are chasing him.
    ___How you doing today, Dad?
    My calm voice tunnels to find the words to touch his hearing. He gazes at me intently: enemy or friend?

    This is intense, I mutter to myself, and the schizophrenic boy replies,
    ______Yes, we're in tents,
    so we both huddle, safe, under the green tarpaulin roof.

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