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  • Adenike Harris

ICU...I See You


"Beep". "Beep". "Beep".

It's consistent, constant and melodic. The bubble of water that sounds like a river flowing or a pot set to slow boil on the stove is linked to her oxygen tube assisting her lungs expansion. The wires connecting to her arms administering clot busting medicine and survival fluid. Bruises and track marks, where every 4 hours they take her blood. I image they're feeding the vampire in the lab with her samples. The vampire always, like clockwork, wants more. It needs to feed--to taste her--test her levels they say--I say--It needs her to be healthy because it wants her O+ blood for itself.


"Beep". "Beep". "Beep."


It starts again-the humming. The inflation of the blood pressure cuff. The sound of suction in the next room, reminds me of the dentist when I can't swallow my own spit. The buzzing of the nurses tending to the patient next door who can't move. This place, these rooms. The beeps. The smell.

The ICU.


My mouth waters. I get these waves in my stomach and heat on the back of my neck. They are taking her blood again, and I feel like its pulling from the life line that connected us 38 years ago. I feel faint, I see this red-beet red-liquid slowly filling a vile. It feels like it is coming straight from my stomach. From my own womb. The womb that was created inside of her. I can't stand and hold her hand while they draw blood. The vampire wants double for his trouble.

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RESTORATIVE NOTIONS

Los Angeles, CA

2020