He looks over the top of his glasses and asks,
(in a Russian accent) do I have any
“pre-existing conditions? You know...
a sickness or medical condition, for which
you exhibited symptoms, or for which
treatment has been received or taken,
and/or which existed prior to the effective
date of coverage, whether or not that
condition had been diagnosed by a physician...”
Half way through the insurance screed
I remember the summer of my double hernia.
I was ten, drowning in that hospital smell,
when my father’ visited. The popsicle he brought
was unconditional love. The Russian’s eyes glaze,
his pen hovers over the page. I wonder,
Who will remember the popsicle when I’m gone?
Who will audit the stitches and medications?
What will happen to the medical history that
shows a tendency toward aortic aneurysm--
the condition that finally killed my old man?
Before I answer, he jabs the needle into my arm.
“You have ripe veins,” he says dryly,
a flicker of humourbriefly flashed across his face.
The extracted blood hits the glass tube,
months spill into the ether. Genome awaits.
He taps the tube with a bony finger. Distracted,
his smile fades. “Yes, very good veins.”