Tag Archives: Chronic Caregiver

“The Worst Question In The World”

Today’s Free Write Poem is dedicated to anyone who’s suffering through a long-term chronic illness, whether as the patient, or as the chronic caregivers who step knowingly out of the realm of normalcy and into the struggle.

The Worst Question in the World

 The worst question in the world

When your world crumbles

Is how are you?

No one ever told me this

How the day might come when I would dread seeing a friendly face

Knowing I have no answer to give

Besides a stammer and a lie or a one-two-three brush off that leaves you sticky and quilled

“I’m fine” is the armor I may choose

To keep their eyes from churning in shades of “what do I say” and “this shouldn’t be”

Of “my life’s hard too” or “I know someone like you”

Of “keep your chin up” and “stay positive”

What did you think I was doing

All this time?

But it’s not their fault

For asking the question

When the answer beguiles

Unsuitably sad

The problem is the corded snake

Tied about my neck

Holding me down and taking my air

Filling my stomach with sluices of juices too bitter to spew

And it’s really not you

It’s the question itself that begets this conflict

Do I lie

Say I’m fine

Make you think I’m okay

Or do I answer I’m broken

I’m in pieces and praying for glue or for God and I’m tired, so tired, and it’s hard to go on

Now the conflicted one is you

You don’t know what to say, what to do, this isn’t how it’s supposed to go

You were just saying hi

And I was supposed to say “fine”

And what are you supposed to say now that I’ve shown you my cards

And the sight makes you


So I smile and I lie

Say I’m doing just fine

For the problem’s not you or the question or the blues

It’s the scab of my world

And if I pick it off for you

Show you what’s underneath

Will I bleed longer still?