The doctor came to examine his patient who was hemorrhaging from inside out. When he looked out the window, he noticed that the moon, too, was bleeding.
Through the rectangular window at midnight, the doctor was drawn to the circular glow. Then he noticed that in its right curve, red flowed through the ivory aperture. It was as if the moon had been stricken by a terrible weapon, something larger than machine gun or cannon.
When the doctor finished reviewing the patient’s chart, he wandered outside to the parking lot to get a better look at the lunar patient. The moon now hovered so low that he was able to stand on his sedan and bandage the wounded portion. Quickly, blood stained through the white covering.
The doctor wiped a red tear from his cheek. It was no use. Much like the shot-up soldiers he had once tried to save in the makeshift tents on foreign soil, he knew the moon would bleed out, too. So the good doctor did the only thing he could. As he had done with those dying soldiers, he set his hand on the fading moon.
He said, “Don’t worry, my friend. Everything will be just fine. Shut your eyes and think of the stars.”
The next night as he walked the hospital floors, a round light followed him wherever he went.
Maureen Sherbondy’s most recent book is Lines in Opposition (Unsolicited Press, 2022). Her work has appeared in Upstreet, Calyx, Feminist Studies, The Oakland Review, and other journals. Maureen lives in Durham, NC. http://www.maureensherbondy.com