Hospice House

They’ve been numerically labeled
all their lives

first husbands, second wives
the last four of their social security number

Not anymore
for here each room is the name of a tree

What used to be 227
is now the Magnolia Suite

Each cold metal door
is replaced by natural grains

which took years of sunrises
and thunder bursts

to ensure the humanity
of the temporary boarder within



About the Poet:
Alan Harris is a 61 year-old hospice volunteer and graduate student who helps hospice patients write memoirs, letters, and poetry. Harris is the 2011 recipient of the Stephen H. Tudor Scholarship in Creative Writing, the 2014 John Clare Poetry Prize, and the 2015 Tompkins Poetry Award from Wayne State University. In addition he is the father of seven, grandfather of eight, as well as a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee.



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