This is not like the other times,
of initial refusal, eventual acceptance, inevitable treatment.
Unlike the times of womb, throat, and chest,
this return bears no greeting of cautious optimism,
no strategy of modern science and primordial hubris.
Exposed in the illuminated void of hope and plan,
left only with the deafening sound of cries, expressed, restrained,
where are the perennial offers of assistance?
What good is this silent acceptance?
Fleeing, stomachs knotted below heavy hearts,
mulling the lone roads of inaction and aggression,
foggy allusions of dream demeaned by familiar trees,
why mourn the meager vestiges that remained,
knowing the only path is one of loss regained?