The doctor motioned to sit, turned a chair / to face the monitor. A perfectly lovely office. / Natural light from the barren window / gathered in circles around my feet.
Though there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Saipan, the island commonwealth has become a ghost town.
Motionless, a man awakes from his stupor of heart. Relief from sharpness, the pooling and swelling.
The burning taste / of acid in the throat / is a warning.
Developing skills of cultural competence requires an open heart and mind — and often an uncomfortable examination of personal biases. It takes time, but along the way physicians gain greater humility and compassion, which translates to expanded access and higher-quality care for patients.