Cabbages and kings

Once we talked to

friends of their

children, their

houses, their

careers, their

plans and dreams;

of the books

they were writing,

films they had seen,

art they had created,

gardens they had grown.

Now we talk to

friends of their

illnesses, their

operations, their

diseases, their

pills and potions

and prognoses,

of who has died

and who will die

soon.