Three hours late
for my morning dose
of Zanidip 20 mg

blood pressure elevating
I stand in queue
at the Chemist Warehouse

alongside silver-headed hearts,
arthritis, stroke, diabetes
and depression.

We sniff the pharmaceutical air
and wait, some of us red-faced,
ready to inflate our life-jackets

as the busy young chemist counts out
pills into little white boxes
that all look the same,

until our names are dredged
from a bottomless basket
of scripts

and we climb
one by one, safely
out of our life-boats.

As the sky lifts its pale mood,
the highs of my blood
now sleeps like a newborn.

Across the road
at The Complete Garden
a magnolia tree

older than me
breathes in rain
through its leathery leaves.

Karen Knight

If you have any comments on this poem, Karen Knight would be pleased to hear them.