The Morning Checklist

I’ve got a white coat that feels like
The seams were sewn
with sutures thrown by shaky hands
It’s shoulders drape over the sides of
My shoulders

I’ve got a stethoscope
It works.
It amplifies my own second guessings
That pulsate through my head and
I hear the worried sighs of patients
Long after I’ve left their bedside.
In. Out. I sigh with my stethoscope,
worried too.

My pager is in my pocket
I keep forgetting to delete the page
So it beeps.
Beeps.
Beeps.

I’ve got a list.
Of patients.
Of mostly numbers.
Data that mostly doesn’t mean much
The list is sometimes a script and it’s sometimes
My job to print. And it’s always
Illegible scribbles in margins
reminding me
How much there is to remember

I have a badge that lets me in
To a rotating door of a schedule
And grants me access to the club of people
Who only know my name
Because of the badge around my neck

Coat. Stethoscope. Pager. List. Badge.
The morning mirror is
easy enough to trick.