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The Dental Love Poem

THE FLOWERS MAY DIE, THE chocolate may melt, but art, poetry, and our memories live on forever. So it is with The Dental Love Poem.

As a second year dental student at Harvard School of Dental Medicine, I was required to take a rotation with medical students, Introduction to Clinical Medicine, a 33-day session in which we learned to perform the complete physical and diagnose signs and symptoms of systemic disease. As a dental student and now an orthodontist, I have always commonly referred to this course as “having to look where the sun doesn’t shine”.

One Day During This Medical Rotation…

One day during this medical rotation, I took a minute off to xerox an application I was submitting to a flute competition. In my haste to get back to work, I left my original copy on the copier. Behind me in line was a very kind doctor who ran after me to return the original and at the moment of our first meeting felt compelled to ask me out on a date to the theater. Recognizing that this was my sister’s chief resident in Internal Medicine, I felt obligated to accept and continued on my merry way.

The Problem Was…

A few weeks later, I received the call that the doctor would be by in one hour to pick me up at Vanderbilt Hall for our date to the theater. The problem was, I had completely forgotten about this commitment and to make matters worse, I had a final exam the next day. There was no way I was going. So, I ask my friend Mary, medical student and PhD Candidate in genetics, to take my place. She gladly accepted. I introduced my two friends to each other, explained the situation, and returned to my room to study for the evening. What happened next was quite remarkable— the birth of The Dental Love Poem.

The Next Morning…

The next morning, delivered to Vanderbilt Hall with a single rose, was The Dental Love Poem.



If in truth
it’s a tooth
at the center
of our underbite

Let’s kiss then
Should a hen be

I often think of this poem and it brings a smile to my face. I hope this poem and blog will help some of you in the dental profession who love dentistry and orthodontics as much as I do.


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