30Marie Sheppard Nolan was born in Galway city and received a Bachelor of Arts from the National University of Ireland. Over the years she has written numerous poems and short stories and is currently researching her family history for a project she hopes to publish next year. She is also working on her first book of short stories and poems some of which are published in The Galway Review.

Bald, Pale, Unable to Inhale

What do you see
When you look at me
A body of veins full of misery
Fed full of promise
Between bouts of vomit
Intravenously induced in this bloody tonic
My head is bald and
My skin is pale
My eyes are yellow
Unable to inhale
This constant prejudice of my body’s pain
Why can’t you see past this pillaged soul?
To the passion trying to stay in control and
Whose hostile patience
Barely enables the logically persuaded
Progression of needles
But your stares
Lay bare humanity’s Face
As l stand before you
In God’s grace
Just one more
In a
That sets you free
An expense in blood
On your waiting list
Is that what you see when you look at me?
An essence upon
Which you will judge
How much time I have left to return to dust?
Recognise instead
One heart
That seeks to fulfil
Redemption imaged in
God’s Will
When this is done
You will see
This person still standing
Is simply

©Marie Sheppard Nolan 6th of March 2016