He staggers in his toga, jovial
but jaundiced. His flagging liver struggles under
the load. His hands twitch, palms redder
than wine. But Bacchus’ cup remains full.
He toasts MELD scores, organ transplants.
“Glorious, glorious! What surgeons have—hic—
done! Here’s to hepatocytes, which
happily relocate. Such advances
demand another round.” Tonight Bacchus
drowns the fact a life must soon be taken
early: some family will gift him the liver
from a brain-dead body playing host
to second chances. Vats of crushed grapes
make this batch full-bodied, but bitter.