Wounds–One Shot Wednesday

Birch Tree Bark

Image via Wikipedia

A birch—
smooth bark dotted
with eyes—
omniscient voyeur
spying on passersby.
Down its trunk
a scar splays open.
Wide, like a wound
I used to pack with sterile gauze
and normal saline.

(My patient’s name
was Forrest.)

In the gutter, red blossoms
from a nearby
Indian Paint Brush
pile in heaps
like clotted blood.

Forrest’s gash—
the result of a barroom brawl—
or so he’d told me—
never healed.
He didn’t bleed to death.
Just died by the inch,
lost the will to fight
when the woman went off
with his opponent.

The tree has been like this
for years.
Over time some miscreant
continues to inflict like damages
on other branches.

Submitted to One Shot Wednesday: http://onestoppoetry.com/