Pectoriloquy |

What happens when I read PFTs FREE TO VIEW

Scott J. Pearson
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Editor’s Note: The poet writes, “I wrote this poem on a fourth-year pulmonology rotation. I am entering into a career in biomedical informatics.”

Editor’s note for authors of submissions to Pectoriloquy: Poems should not exceed 350 words, should not have been previously published, and should be related to concerns of physicians and medicine. First submissions to the Pectoriloquy Section should be submitted via e-mail to poetrychest@aol.com. Authors of accepted poems will be asked to submit the final version to CHEST Manuscript Central.

Michael Zack, MD, FCCP

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.

Chest. 2013;143(3):871. doi:10.1378/chest.12-1352
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Published online

It is a minor miracle
that I have learned to see—
in a collection of numbers,
  and letters—
a patient that moves
 and breathes
  and has his or her being
among us.
Through these complex numbers
I prescribe
and I dictate action.
Through these trends
I decide which diseases this person has,
and I demarcate their progress or descent.
The once impersonal
has evolved legs and hair and heartbeats.
The postulate has become
It is real.




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