Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

The Blade

Kevin R. Loughlin
Boston, Massachusetts, USA


The blade slashes through the skin
Not in violence
But in cure
It is held not by an assailant
But by a surgeon

The same instrument
But with such cross purposes
As a surgeon, I know the fear and anticipation
That proceeds the strike
Assailants must feel the same

Ironic, violence and healing
Both take training and skill
Mysteries both, which I will never fully understand
My privilege is to hold the scalpel and not the knife
And help, if I can



KEVIN R. LOUGHLIN, MD,MBA was born in New York City and raised on Long Island. He received a B.A. from Princeton University, a M.D. from New York Medical College, a MBA from Boston University and a MA(Hon) from Harvard University. He has been a member of the division of urology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital since 1983. He is a trustee of the American Board of Urology and a member of the board of directors of the American Urological Society.


Winter 2015  |  Sections  |  Poetry

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