Road Map by Lynne Schmidt

There is no road map
That suggests to turn left at cancer
And right on chemotherapy street.
It doesn’t remind you to wear gloves
Or to hold off on that beverage until after
Ten o’clock
Because that marks the twelve hour mark.
And you can’t be too drunk
When handling medication that can absorb through your skin
But is safe enough to give to him.
There is no road map to canceling plans,
Forgetting plans,
Or coming home early because there was a bad day.
There is no road map to trying to foster new relationships
Because those feelings you felt
Were just under fingertips
And now they’re somewhere under a needle
While you wait
For hope
For treatment
For anything other than what’s happening here.
For anything other than what is happening here.

Lynne Schmidt (she/her) is a mental health professional in Maine. Her memoir, The Right to Live: A Memoir of Abortion was the Maine Nonfiction Award Winner and a PNWA finalist. Her poetry received the Honorable Mention from Joy of the Pen. Her work has appeared in Sixty-Four Best Poets of 2018, 2018 Emerging Poets, Frost Meadow Review, Poets of Maine, Poets of New England, Maine Dog Magazine, Alyss Literary, UNE Magazine, Her Kind Vida, and others. Lynne is the founder of AbortionChat. She has been and continues to be a featured poet at events throughout Maine. She prefers the company of her three dogs and one cat to humans.
Twitter: @LynneSchmidt
Facebook: Lynn(e) Schmidt

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