I no longer remember his face yet

it’s ever ready to appear. I wince

at the imagined scar from a small

laceration—a complication of

my first intubation. I failed to find

his vocal cords but it’s the mangled lip

I found later that reproves me. I caused

that. Medicine is not without her risks,

to the doer and to him who under goes.

To slide the tube in neatly, and make

an insensible man breathe, satisfies

both souls; but the learning and the harm

are twined. The old oath suffers me to look

my mistakes in the eye and try again.