Poems of the Week

The Thirds Man

by Julia Griffin

“Arkansas man who awoke from 19-year coma in 2003 has died aged 57”
The Guardian

From 1965, he saw
The waking world till ’84,
Then fell asleep, aged just nineteen,
Until ’03. How fresh and green
He was for one of thirty-eight!
He revelled in his wakeful state
With eager eyes; alas, time flew;
And all too soon, in ’22,
They closed for good—a poignant fact—
At fifty-seven. Now subtract:
A wondrous symmetry appears!
(Poor prize to him, one rather fears).