Resident Review  |   December 2016
Creative Writing and Medicine: Unpacking Your Heart With Words
Article Information
Cardiovascular Anesthesia / Education / CPD / Resident Review
Resident Review   |   December 2016
Creative Writing and Medicine: Unpacking Your Heart With Words
ASA Monitor 12 2016, Vol.80, 58-59.
ASA Monitor 12 2016, Vol.80, 58-59.
All babies are born with a knowledge of poetry,
because the lub-dub of the mother’s heart is in iambic meter.
Then, life slowly starts to choke the poetry out of us.
–Billy Collins
and what could be more comforting than to fold grief
like a blanket –
to fold anger like a blanket,
with neat corners –
to put them into a box of words?
–Mary Oliver
In anesthesiology, we live seconds away from tragedy. It stalks us in the O.R. and trails us into the PACU. It is my last night-call in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) and I’m paged to a room for a patient I don’t know. It must be a mistake. Turning into the room, I see a bearded man leaning over a 4-year-old girl. In a second, I realize it’s the respiratory therapist doing chest compressions. I ask for the PICU fellow and attending. I’m told that neither can be reached. I grab the ambu-bag in the nearby cart and tell the nurse to call a code.
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