Tag Archives: illness

Little Wonder

I was diagnosed with
an illness that
they didn’t catch in time.

Doctor told me that I could be
in pain for months
perhaps years
and could face
permanent hearing loss
in my left ear.

It was at times
debilitating.

The vertigo and tinnitus
were Hell.
Days became Hell.
Life became Hell.

Even after
several months
I wasn’t getting better
and nobody was sure
if I ever would.

It wore me down
eventually.

I was just reaching
middle age and
had never felt
so vulnerable.

I sat downtown on a bench
feeling sorry for myself
when I heard,

“GET OUT OF MY COUNTRY!
TAKE YOUR VIRUS BACK TO CHINA!”

Three teenaged boys
harassing
an Asian woman and
her daughter.

They were right in their face.
The woman and child
were scared.
Nobody was helping them.

Before I knew it
I was across the square.

I grabbed the biggest one and
social-distanced him
right into the
central square fountain.

The other two turned
on me but I
shoved them down
hard
and they scattered.

I was sick
but I wasn’t weak.

“They’re Korean,
you Shitheads!”
I called after them.

All the excitement
made me dizzy.
I was unwell.
I shouldn’t be doing
things like that
and so I staggered
back to my bench
rubbed my temples and
closed my eyes.

I felt a sudden
warmth on the side
of my head
a flash of heat
and the pain
the dizziness
-the nausea that I had
suffered for months
were all suddenly gone.

I opened my eyes
to find the
young Asian girl
staring back at me
as she took her hand away
from my ear.

Her large beautiful
almond eyes
were filled with compassion
and such sadness
that I have never before
seen in a child.

I knew in that moment
that my sickness was gone
for good and that
she had taken it away.

The girl smiled.

She put a finger to her lips.
“Shhhh!” She said then
turned and
ran back to her mother.

I watched them
turn the corner and
disappear.

Afterwards,
I put my head
in my hands and I wept
because I didn’t
know what else to do.

Then I got up and I started to
walk straight
for the first time
in months…

then I started to run
and laugh.

Mom’s Not Going To Be Around Forever

She sounded good today
strong
vibrant in spirit
not like last time when she was weak
distant
sick.

Sometimes you don’t think that she’s going to
get any better

You called her from work
because you had so many things to do and
places to go after just like
every damn day
so you wanted to make sure that at least
you called
you made the effort.

But you’re miles behind on work.
You can’t stay on the phone
for too long you have a meeting and
a list of lists to accomplish.

You just wanted to say high but once you
have her on
she sounds so happy
she’ll talk about everything in her day
-the doctors, the medicine, the treatment, the cats.

You start to feel rushed because you have to go
and she can go on and on about everything.

But what else is she going to do?
Who else can she talk to and how often do you really speak to her?
She just wanted to hear from her son.
She just wanted to fucking talk to you
because for most of her day
she just sits around; is too weak to walk anywhere
and has nobody but dad to talk to when he’s not at work.

So when she says ‘I love you, son.’
you realize that one day
you will have done anything
just to hear her say that
just to hear her voice again
just to have her there
for just a little bit longer.

So when she starts talking about the flowers
or the birds in the yard
you don’t say that you have to go
you don’t rush to goodbye
you don’t hang up.

Instead
you find a chair
sit down
and you listen.