RICHARD M. RATZAN
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Heartwords, murmurs of meaning
you recovered intact—
private sounds uttered in confidence to a doctor
who listened in awe, and then translated . . .
Was it because . . .
Was it because you entered, hearing,
others' lives that you wrote?
"I practice medicine full time and then write about it," you said.
But were you able, ever, to convince your patient,
reading your words as you listened to his,
that you were listening, together, to the same sound,
that writing is recruitment,
the translation of one's audible being
a message received,
a message enriched,
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RATZAN RM. For Michael Halberstam. Ann Intern Med. 1981;95:386. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-95-3-386
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1981;95(3):386.
Copyright © 2017 American College of Physicians. All Rights Reserved.
Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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