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Pupil of the Eye


The eye dilated in the physician’s dark exam room,
While into it the eyes of new white coats loom,
From this eye I am learning,
What is normal and what is concerning.
I direct: look up, down, left and right,
Meanwhile shining an ironically blinding light.
To you this is a strange affair,
I watch you fidget while into your eye I stare,
Front to back as a medical student I observe,
Your cornea, pupil, lens, retina and optic nerve.

The view into an eye is breathtakingly mysterious,
And I am a blundering Odysseus,
Struggling to orient direction,
Not to get lost in the reflection.
I imagine what you see,
Looking back at me.
Watching for a hint towards a diagnosis,
Wondering about your prognosis.
Of these things I am unsure,
My accumulation of knowledge still immature.

The marvelous organ of sight,
Illuminated bright,
The iris glows hues of brown and blue,
Gentle sparkles dance across this privileged view.
By looking in at something made to see out,
A person you can learn a vast amount.
Thank you for allowing this interlude,
From the typical unidirectional solitude.
In this brief encounter I have learned a great deal,
I sincerely thank you for teaching me how to better heal.

Kaitlyn Dykes Kaitlyn Dykes (5 Posts)

Contributing Writer

Sidney Kimmel Medical College Thomas Jefferson University


Kaitlyn Dykes is a 3rd year medical student at Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University. Her writing and art focus on aspects of delivering patient-centered care, the experience of medical training, and helping fellow students develop into aware, compassionate physicians. She is President of Physician Executive Leadership (PEL), a program committed to aiding students in becoming physician healthcare leaders of the future by addressing critical gaps in medical education. She is also dedicated to and actively involved in clinical translational research. She graduated with honors in 2011 from the University of Minnesota with a degree in genetics, cell biology, and cell development, along with a minor in art history, and fulfillment of the Dean’s Scholars Leadership Program.