Poetry Prompt: A Poem for Emily


And now for something completely a little different.

Longtime FPR editor and friend Emily has been hospital-bound and going through a bout of illness lately. So to make her smile, we’re dedicating this week’s poetry prompt to her. Using one of the following as your source text, we invite you to craft a ‘get well soon’ poem for Emily:

Post your poem in the comments below and we’ll be sure she sees them.




  • December 11, 2015

    Catherine Seitz Nichols

    the results are almost always favorable

    it is wise to keep
    deeper parts

    holding the tongue
    hands, together
    hands nearly meeting
    through frosts and thaws

    ivory point
    emanations from
    normal in the morning
    the outer layer of

    [all lines from Kenelm Winslow’s The Home Medical Library, with a few caps changed]

    Get Well Soon Emily!!!

  • December 12, 2015

    George McKim

    For E.

    the tongue is furred. delirious.
    The heart a bag
    of thin gruels

    hours are weeks
    the pain fades away and

    there is in the absence
    life and recovery and books
    and serious physicians and

    the dance of the door
    of the sick room
    when leaving


    [text pilfered from Kenelm Winslow’s The Home Medical Library]

    Hope you have a speedy recovery, Emily.

  • December 12, 2015

    Tara Miner

    “the random pain”

    Would you like to go
    If I don’t look great?

    You withheld the truth.
    Had I known you were
    not supposed to be here –

    I don’t want the leaving
    pain in all forms.
    the random pain.

    End of discussion.

    [Lines taken from Grey’s Anatomy script 201, “Bring the Pain”]


    Get better, Emily!!

  • December 12, 2015

    Elizabeth McNabb

    The Beautiful Friend

    The living tissues,
    lie beyond the scope of
    the text
    (expurgated, calculated,
    recondite, altered).

    Such phenomena,
    purely vital,
    are represented
    by authors
    in everybody’s hands.

    The ingeneous,
    the beautiful,
    the kind
    the source,
    in the simplest language
    a treatise.

    The Editor
    has been kind.

    Remix from Preface to the 5th Edition of:
    Gray, H. (1858). Anatomy of the human body. Philadelphia: Lea & Febiger.

  • December 15, 2015


    I was dead
    now I’m not.
    Try not to stare, okay?
    It’s just a stomach virus
    or a flu.
    You become a human statue.
    I’m sure it’s nothing.
    It hurts like crazy,
    I’m gonna need a painkiller.
    Sir, I get it.
    You’re in a hurry.
    What if I choose the wrong one?
    I’m not going to hide.
    I’m so grateful for this opportunity.
    I just need to talk.
    Well, I guess I can live with it.
    I was dead
    now I’m not.
    Sometimes what we need
    is a new plan.

    Lines taken from “Grey’s Anatomy” episode 319.

    Get well soon!

  • December 21, 2015

    Mary Bast

    termination of the disease

    begin by
    not suffering,
    care in diet,
    remedies well-known,
    the best woman healthy
    air within as pure
    as air without
    the door open to
    her calling

    All words in sequence from Florence Nightingale’s Notes on Nursing.

  • December 21, 2015

    Amber Beilharz

    15,000 kilometres – Sitting with you:

    In admiration of the many acts of kindness
    shown, generation of circulation and voice,
    [an] enlarged view of the heart, body and blood,
    all these ordinary circumstances. Rest judged
    necessary. Speak blood, we need merely say
    that it is dark, with feeling and gravity soon separates.

    Anatomy of the human body. v.5(1870).

  • January 2, 2016

    Lewis Oakwood


    I’m knitting a sweater and wondering about
    that dizzy blonde doctor girl.

    Is it a crush? Is it an innocent flirtation?

    Everything looks good, pretty good,
    I’m going to do this. Great, a date, tonight.

    Espresso, doughnuts and a kiss.


    Get well soon, Emily :)

    (From Grey’s Anatomy Episode Scripts – No 219.)