Gerard Sarnat

Where Was Skillscaper When Moi Needed You?

In high school, while I studied a dead tongue (Latin)
some acquired the UN’s official language (French)

plus still others of us the most useful of all (Spanish)
which is what I just realized 2 decades or so later

when I wanted to be able to converse with my patients.
Post failing at Berlitz I memorized a phrasebook

that showed up babysitting one trilingual grandson:
Instead of proving to be a Rosetta Stone Eureka

learning moment, Hispanic nurses said a sick person
asked if El Doctor’s maybe speaking Portuguese¿

and then accused our community health center director
about her physician practicing veterinary medicine.


Gerard Sarnat MD’s been nominated for Pushcarts and won other prizes. KADDISH FOR THE COUNTRY was selected for pamphlet distribution on Inauguration Day nationwide. “Amber Of Memory” was the single poem chosen for his 50th Harvard reunion Dylan symposium; The Harvard Advocate accepted a second. Gerard’s a physician who’s built/staffed homeless clinics, a Stanford professor/healthcare CEO. Collections: Homeless Chronicles (2010), Disputes, 17s, Melting the Ice King (2016). Married since 1969; he has seven grand/kids.

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