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The View

"A poem based on a short story with a twisted ending."

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The View

By Tony Radford

An institute was built to suite some folks that most don’t know,
a place to send our wounded men with no place else to go.

In a room of white, all day and night two injured souls would lay
and never tread, confined to bed, forever both would stay.

A window there the two would share, but only one could see
past walls of white, their captive plight, how life out there would be.

One man lay too far away to gain an outward view,
his neighbor’s words - what he observed, would simply have to do.

But even he would likely be too prone to see outside,
and far too weak to get a peek despite how hard he tried.

Once a day the nurses came as both his lungs would fill,
for an hour’s time he’d be inclined, his eyes above the sill.

The image gained while fluid drained, he’d muster strength to tell,
the words he’d send made sure his friend could share the view as well.

With tube in nose, through muffled prose, a picture he would draw,
in great detail, he’d never fail to capture all he saw.

Across the street, a park he’d see where children came to play
beneath the shade the hardwoods made, to escape the heat of day.

And in his view, a bench or two where lovers stopped to kiss,
and tears would fall as they’d recall past loves they’d come to miss.

Out - beyond, a tranquil pond, it’s banks so neatly kept,
and glazed with dew, the clover grew while weeping willows wept.

With voice so faint, the scenes he’d paint would be their matinee,
the words he spoke would help them cope, to live another day.

Of words he’d tire, his strong desire to see things on his own,
to learn firsthand, the view so grand another man was shown.

One night late, by chance he’d wake to a sound of grave despair,
his neighbor’s plight was there in sight, a desperate fight for air.

A frantic seek, but much too weak to hit the nurse’s call,
he’d just observe and fail to serve, he’d let his neighbor fall.

He watched him pass, a chance at last, for deep inside he knew,
the vacant bed, he’d take instead to gain his neighbor’s view.

The morning rounds, a body found and quickly whisked away,
he asked the nurse to please reverse the beds that very day.

A wish fulfilled, his heart was thrilled with no regrets at all,
and out he gazed, but so amazed, the view – a solid wall.

Written by tradford
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