Evergreen Hospice Seasons of Hope Luncheon 2012

CareForce sponsored a table at the luncheon today and would like to thank each of our guests who came and gave so generously.  Stuart Farber, MD, from the University of Washington Medical Center was one of the guest speakers.  He shared the following poem by Raymond Carver, as food for thought regarding the paradox of life and death as a part of our human existence.  Mr. Carver wrote this after he was diagnosed with untreatable lung cancer; he died  in 1988.  Carver is a beloved Pacific Northwest author of short stories and poems who lived in the San Juan Islands. Thank you to Evergreen Palliative Care and Hospice, a part of Evergreen Healthcare ,  for the services they provide daily in the Puget Sound Area. Donations to the Evergreen Healthcare Foundation support pastoral and music therapy to their clients.

 

What The Doctor Said

He said it doesn’t look good
he said it looks bad in fact real bad
he said I counted thirty-two of them on one lung before
I quit counting them
I said I’m glad I wouldn’t want to know
about any more being there than that
he said are you a religious man do you kneel down
in forest groves and let yourself ask for help
when you come to a waterfall
mist blowing against your face and arms
do you stop and ask for understanding at those moments
I said not yet but I intend to start today
he said I’m real sorry he said
I wish I had some other kind of news to give you
I said Amen and he said something else
I didn’t catch and not knowing what else to do
and not wanting him to have to repeat it
and me to have to fully digest it
I just looked at him
for a minute and he looked back it was then
I jumped up and shook hands with this man who’d just given me
something no one else on earth had ever given me
I may have even thanked him habit being so strong