Nurse as Fairy Queen (Hospital Poem VII)
squealing blue eyeshadow & glitter
on her forehead — her name, I think,
is Isabella, & through her baubles
(waltzing from fingertips into paper
cups) our sleep comes with its lusty
guillotine. was ever Titania, that
tulip of steel, so full of wonder?
did human souls sailing by in the
night, in the unit hallways sun-
unlit, offend the fey in her blood?
did that bardic matriarch have tales
for them before she sent them back,
back into our rooms, where our bodies
were dark with unspirited waiting?
streams roll & slink at her touch
but this false queen of saline &
patterned cloth is the one true thing
here, the anchor of dreams & come-
hither of hope.
Chelsea Eckert is a creative writing undergraduate at San Jose State University. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Phantasmacore, Gingerbread House Literary Magazine, Strangelet Press, and Liquid Imagination, among others.