Lying on the Cath Lab table, oxygen
up my nose, needles in my everywhere,
nurses and technicians asking questions.
Technology all around.
It’s like a Federation starship sickbay,
or a Starbase infirmary
with many more actors vying for a role
and space at my table.
There are two main characters. The protagonists are
the Chief Medical Officer and me.
Other smart young wonders,
called residents, watch.
Also, a consulting rep from
the manufacturer of my shiny new transcatheter aortic heart valve,
to be snaked into place and magically,
guided, angiographically trough my veins and arteries,
and into my beating heart, which will soon almost stop,
scaring all except unconscious me,
to replace the defective OEM part.
They all look alike in masks and caps. I’m naked on a procedure table,
surrounded by X-ray machines, big screen monitors,
procedure carts, lights, and computer workstations.
In some in another room more medical miracle role players
wave from behind large windows.
No TV doctor medicine-show drama. Okay, maybe a little,
but two days later I am home and ready to rock.
Ya gotta love medical science.
Look both ways and ask lots of questions.
Mind the gaps for diagnoses and prognoses.
One day I was chopping weeds.
When I looked up Libby, our toy poodle, was gone.
I knew she would go home with virtually anyone.
But she’d been fixed years earlier, so she could go play.
I noticed a familiar SUV driving away. I was unarmed, but I felt, maybe,
Libby had been dognapped. I called for her and looked around.
After a while, the car returned and pulled over near me.
The lady driving rolled down the window. She held a small black dog
in her lap and asked if it was my dog. I said, “I don’t know. Lemme check
her license right here on her collar.” Libby was calm. I got semi-sarcastic.
“Yep. Last seen right over there in my yard sniffing her own shit.”
The indignant do-gooder gave me a look and said, “I’m a dog
rescuer. I rescue strays.” I took Libby and said, “Today you’ve
moved up to dognapping. Last I checked that was against the law.
Now may I see your rescue license?”
I could tell she was getting pissed at me.
Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall started pounding my mind and I turned up my volume,
“Hey! Lady! Leave this dog alone!”
All-in-all, look both ways when tending your flock.
Your poor wretched strays may get “rescued” the minute you look one way.
Mind the gaps in the minds of those dumbly righteous souls who do good to feel better than.
He didn’t marvel at that momentous moment. After many years, she had become sanctimonious.
It wasn’t the stupendous vision he hoped for. It was horrendous, not tremendous,
seeing her now as portentous.
Look both ways but the past was then, this is now.
Find and mind the gaps for hidden reasons for change.
Kicking off the twelfth month of twenty-twenty-two, artist, businesswoman, swimmer, writer, mother, wife, sister, (I could go on), and our friend and fictioneer leader, Rochelle, has provided us with a peek out from Roger Bultot’s window with his inspiring photo as a bridge to creativity.
It goes like this. We look at the picture and write whatever story (beginning, middle, & end) we want. Easy, right? It’s doesn’t even have to be pure fiction. But we must prove our micro (or flash) – (non-)fiction bone fides by trimming our stories to any number of words under 101. Try it!
The directions are simple and available on Rochelle’s blog page, reachable with a simple tap, click, or press on Roger’s picture, like it was a detonator.
Genre: Espionage Fiction
Title: Truncated Bridge
Word Count: 100
Looking out the window, I felt stress. Ignorance fed by fear. After this job, I’d comfortably retire. To what? Sad.
The morning sunrise lacked hope. It was threatening. A foreboding bloody sky in a randomly meaningless universe. I didn’t care. It was time.
I lit what I promised myself was my last cigarette and sat by the window as I’d done hundreds of times before. When I saw the target on the bridge, I pressed the detonator button and watched the explosion. I always hated all the collateral damage. The news would blame the old bridge. Everyone lies. Everyone dies.
Look both ways to find happy endings.
Mind the gaps because that’s where the bridges collapse.
And for the music lovers among us, I present the Eagles singing “Seven Bridges Road.” If it works. I suppose I took the bridges thing a bit too far.
It was one of those warm and humid days.
When it’s like that in LA, it is
miserably smoggy, but here
it is just moody and gloomy—no rain—
in the mid-seventies, like me.
Drove and hour to Temple, Texas,
for tests (the answers to which I thought I knew)
and to see a new PA-doc
and then to get gas
and drive another hour back home.
It’s boring sitting and waiting,
but since this is a hospital, boring and routine are good.
No, “I’m sorry, Mister Bill, but … ‘oh, no’.”
I saw nicely dressed police or correctional officers escorting
a mildly overweight bald man in an orange jump suit
and fake shoes
with handcuffs in the front,
all making it hard for others to not stare and wonder.
It was not so boring thinking about that.
Got an obit email that morning.
Another high school classmate had died
(they say he passed to be euphemistic
as though he just kept driving).
Patrick Murphy (Murph)
was an artist and philosopher
of Irish descent, and a Vietnam War vet.
His obituary was more interesting than most.
Anyway, I shall not be
characteristically pointing out problems or deficiencies today
because Murph is dead, and I am not. It’s all good, thanks.
So, I’ll just sit here trying to remember him
from art class, I think,
and be happily bored on a gloomy day
in a hospital clinic waiting area
in Temple, fucking, Texas.
Looking both ways at the days of gloom and doom. Mind the gaps in loose cuffs and I wonder who wipes his butt.
Click the photo of Robin Williams and Matt Damon to watch this scene from the movie, Good Will Hunting.
I found thalassic in Robin Devoe’s Dictionary of the Strange, Curious, & Lovely. I wrote an acrostic insult poem with more rare words from the same book. It’s Monday. I started this Saturday morning. I’m tardy.
Tin gods abound worldwide. Practiced prevaricators Hemipygicly half-assed witlessness, Adonized avatars in their own lost and low minds, Lardaceous lickpennies of limicolous living with Acherontic soulless evil demonic spirits, those Snollygosters comfortable within any snobocracy, Slubberdegullions of the lowest order or less, Imbruted by nature without redemption. Cacodemons with sycophants.
Look both ways when searching for right.
Mind the gaps for the tin gods because they disguise well.