The Crickets Have Arthritis By Shane Koyczan Essay
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It doesn’t matter why I was there, where the air is sterile and the sheets sting.
It doesn’t matter that I was hooked up to this thing that buzzed and beeped every time my heart leaped, like a man whose faith tells him:
God 's hands are big enough to catch an airplane, or a world.
It doesn’t matter that I was curled up like a fist protesting death, or that every breath was either hard labor or hard time, or that I’m either always too hot or too cold.
Doesn’t matter because my hospital roommate wears star wars pajamas, and he’s nine years old.
His name is Louis,
and I don’t have to ask what he’s got.
The bald head with the skin and bones frame speaks volumes.
The Gameboy and feather pillow booms like, they’re trying to make him feel at home ‘cause he’s gonna be here a while
I manage a smile the first time I see him and it feels like the biggest lie I’ve ever told, so I hold my breath ‘cause I’m thinking any minute now he’s gonna call me on it
I hold my breath ‘cause I’m scared of a fifty seven pound boy hooked to a machine, because he’s been watching me,
and maybe I’ve got him pegged all wrong, like
maybe he’s bionic or some shit.
So I look away,
like I just made eye contact with a gang member who’s got a rap sheet the length of a lecture on dumb mistakes politicians have made. I look away like he’s gonna give me my life back the minute I’ve got something to trade, I damn near pull out my pack and say, “Cigarette?”…