“The joy of life is incredible.”

A little medicine is a good thing. Midnight typewriter. All the things, the inner workings, the innards rattling with the melting ice cubes in a Summer glass, Summer wannabe glass. A friend drives me to the angry, reluctant doctor in a room marked for emergencies. This is America. Medical insurance pimps it all. We die in its slick war. She says to lie down, they’ll pump me full of fluids, to heal my stomach lining. Later will come an x-ray. I ask for gumdrops. I think back to the lobby court rooms and the arguments turned down so you can’t hear. Everyone walks around with guns holstered on their hips for protection in the blur of the argument you can’t hear. The lines are long stretching out their shadows. Stomach lining could be better, could’ve told me in English that there was a problem. I hold a red balloon in agony. If I let it go it could be the one last thing holding me here. A cord is streaming out of my right arm. A new right arm wants to grow out of my left side. They are talking to my mother on the phone. You know your son is here. We are about to tell him everything is okay, ‘cept for his stomach acids are really something else. We wouldn’t wanna be him. Know what I mean? But he’s your mess now. Would ice cream help? Just as I think this, someone calls out my name. The curtain opens. There stands a friend. Life is wonderful that way. I hope this is not an episode of House, in which case I could be getting better treatment of course. Make my heart explode to reconnect my sentiment to Billie Holiday on the radio. You wanna dress in drag as a fine gag and that is fine with me. I wanna live to see another day so I guess I’ll carry these meds with me to try and numb the pain. Make it workable. Make it heal. Paper cranes and everyone, you can hold paper hands and mute the commercials.

“The joy of life is incredible.” -RZA

Dietary paradigm shifts on a flier. Don’t eat this. And don’t drink that. Fill in the blanks. Some of this is fictional. You’re the type to get knocked out in a snowball fight. This is what I mean. You’re the type to throw a fit when you don’t get your way. When it happened to me, I’d throw a dish all the way from the living room on into the kitchen. What a crash it’d make in there. Everything but the kitchen sink. Other innocent dishes drying on the rack polite as hell.

Something could rupture, burst, drain, rise. Watch out for those eyeball whites. When Bukowski was admonished by the doctor, “You have one more single drink and you’re done for,” he walked right down to the pub on the corner and ordered some whiskey like a new lease on life was nothing. Not everyone is gonna get that kinda free pass. They’re not exactly handing them out. No booze, no coffee, no tea. “I’m making you a smoooooooothie.”

Don’t panic, for when I fall back it’s that I’m making snow angels. The temptation to make a family in the snow is… not really there.

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