Thursday, October 6, 2011

Do Not Take This Medicine

Do Not Take This Medicine

If you are pregnant, or are actively seeking
pregnancy, or are even picturing
yourself as a pregnant person, the yellow dress
with the empire waist you could still
wear, all the extra fabric gathered up when
you wear it now.

If you are prone to depression and feelings
of loneliness. To not deleting
voice mail. To forgetting how old you are.

If you also take other medicine, or if you are
allergic to chocolate, or oxygen.

On an empty stomach. Because we’ll know
if you’ve eaten. We designed
this pill to self-destruct if, when it tumbles
down your throat, it ricochets
around the lining of your stomach, unable
to rest and sink in.

From strangers. From doctors who are acting
a little strange, shaky hands
scratching tree branches onto prescription pads.

If you cannot say how sick you are. If you
cannot rate your pain.

If you have a heart murmur, or if your heart
murmurs to you what it wants
or doesn’t want. Ask your doctor if your
heart is healthy enough for
what you are feeding it.


  1. I like this very much. It is a valid and incisive comment on a worrying aspect of our society. Very impressive.

  2. Wow, Hannah! And I love how you concluded the poem.

  3. I told my daughter to read your blog. I'm sending this link to her specifically. This is excellent.

  4. Love 'the yellow dress with the empire waist;' what a strong visual!

  5. Hannah this is great!

    The words "or are even picturing yourself as a pregnant person" ring true, reminding of me of how they still lay the protective x-ray shield over me at the dentist's, as if there's even a remote chance of pregnancy at this point in life!

  6. I am kind of laughing very hard reading this ...every time a drug commercial appears on TV we chime in and list all the potential side effects and dos and don'ts...I think they should read your poem instead of their warnings, at least those poor suckers who have to take that medicine will have fun...I actually do know why all those things are listed...has to do with FDA trials but I like your analysis better : )

  7. Oooh, Hannah. I haven't popped in over here in a while, and I'm so glad I did today. I feel like I'm opening up a bunch of lovely presents.

  8. That last line about what we're feeding our hearts is the insight that makes this poem outstanding, Hannah. Bravo!

  9. Is it just me, or have you gone a bit darker and more eerie lately? Don't get me wrong--I like it.


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