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Chip Bergeron

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The Crab Is Not Your Friend
by Chip Bergeron
Sunday, December 18, 2011
Rated "G" by the Author.
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Recent poems by Chip Bergeron
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           >> View all 112

I started this poem in my wife’s room in the Intensive Care Unit of Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. A day later she was no longer with me. If you know astrological signs, you’ll know what “the crab” signifies.





The crab is not your friend

As you lie fighting for breath

Desperate for every puff

The machine pushes

Takes control in out-in-out,

It’s not you breathing anymore,

But the machine:

The crab is not your friend.


The crab is not your friend

Wires monitor every function-

They connect to black screens.

Numbers, jagged lines

Look like death’s lightning

A one way trip  no turning back

Insatiable, pitiless,

The crab is not your friend.


The crab is not your friend

Tubes putting in, taking out

Measuring drop by drop

Life slowly ebbing

What difference does how much

Make when the end is inevitable

Why care now?

The crab is not your friend.


The crab is not your friend

It takes you away from me

Every minute an eternity.

Soon I’ll be left alone

For as long as long’s going to be

After so many years

So much, so much, so much…

The crab is not your friend.


Chip Bergeron

13 December, 2011



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Reviewed by Padre Scott West 12/19/2011
Chip, I came back to Denver on the First of November to help my ex Sam into that eternal slumber that your wife shares with him. It feels like we had the experience. I know though, that this poem describes your experience, not mine. I feel for you, although I cannot share your pain, I know that we are walking on the same road.
God bless you Chip. My prayers are mostly for you, because I know the pain that you are walking through. I cherish the idea that I am walking this path with such an honorable man as you.
Reviewed by Patrick Granfors 12/19/2011
I have witnessed this beast in action, buying a few hours or days....of misery. The crab is not your friend as you relive the nightmare, realizing the outcome would not change. Yet it is the best hope that can be offered and sometimes things end differently. Know you did all you could, and accept that the last hours were not as you would have hoped, for they were never in your control. The price of love is often grief and for now it must be paid. My heartfelt sympathy, Chip. Patrick
Reviewed by jude forese 12/19/2011
my words are but dust but my spirit is with you ...

a crab does indeed have a hard shell ...

Reviewed by Christine Tsen 12/19/2011
Oh no, Chip! Oh no. I'm so desperately sorry.
I'm so sad for you, and I know how much you both have loved one another. I could always tell. Bless her, bless you both.
Reviewed by Connie Faust 12/19/2011
I'm very sorry to hear of your wife's death. I have enjoyed her poems. My thoughts and prayers will be with you, Chip. Sincerely, Connie
Reviewed by Richard King 12/18/2011
Chip we’re so sad to hear about Susan’s passing. I’m not knowledgeable regarding astrological signs, but you’ll both be in our thoughts. Stay strong my friend. Dick
Reviewed by Ed Matlack 12/18/2011
Chip, I was on that kind of machine back in 2009 when I was in a diabetic coma & had told my other half if that happens to pull the plug, but she didn't do so and here I am to prove most sincerest condolances on the your loss & I will keep u in my prayers...Ed

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