On The Shore
Doug Tanoury

At the Mariner's Hospital
The nurses would
Set old sailors in wooden
Wheelchairs right at the water's edge.
I'd see them in the afternoon
Wearing pajamas or robes
And on summer mornings
With blankets draped across their shoulders.
Some looked out over the lake
Others stared down at their feet,
A few slept stretched out in the sun
Like driftwood on the shore, and only
The steam whistles of freighters
Navigating the narrow channel
Would rouse them.