The other day, sitting waiting for my consultation at the hospital, rather than twiddle my thumbs, or get increasingly exasperated with the passing time, I came up with a poem instead. The title is a play on one of my mother’s constant refrains during my childhood (Wait and See….can’t recall how many times we ate ‘wait and see’ pudding!)

Wait and be Seen
People sit, poses varied
slumping, stiff, fidgeting,
doing the crossword,
chatting (about how long everything takes)
My appointment card says 11.15 –
but I wait, and wait, to be seen
Machinery hums, a constant sound
overlaid with voices
annoyed, stirring.
Nurses huddle, conferring,
or move with purpose down the tacky lino.
Doors open,
open again, left ajar
What a bore
Down the corridor
the steady tread of feet
But all going Somewhere
Unlike me, on my chair
musing on lost minutes
Lost hours….


  1. I absolutely hate being kept waiting, my biggest pet peeve ever! You’ve captured that helpless, waiting feeling so well, very nice Sue!

  2. You capture it perfectly. It must be universal. Still I know it’s coming when I see my doctor whom I love. I bring ipad or books, try to get as comfy as possible and sometimes I write knowing when he sees me he will give me as long as it takes, never rushing always listening. As he does that for all, I expect the wait.

  3. nice…way to use your time…i cant stand waiting rooms and they are never on time…have written while sitting int hem as well..you paint the scene well…and everyone going somewhere and yet we are waiting…smiles.

  4. Waiting…oh I hate it… at the docs I always take a book! Great poem!

  5. this made me smile cause since i started writing poetry i’m usually just doing the same when i have to wait somewhere.. could see the hospital scene clearly..well painted.. and hope the consultation went well

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