Saturday, October 19th, 2013. A beautiful crisp fall day. Our condominium complex drive was cheerfully planted with bright cushion mums. Little did we know in July 1997, when we moved from Iowa to Boston, how important that housing choice and this date would become.
Our condominium high rise building is across the street from side entrances to Massachusetts General Hospital, one of the premiere healthcare facilities in the United States. As some of you already know, on Monday, October 14th, 2013, my husband suffered a six-minute cardiac arrest in front of our building. He was rushed by ambulance to MGH; put into an induced coma on life support. They lowered his body temperature and gave him a paralytic drug to keep him absolutely still, trying to minimize brain damage.
On Tuesday evening, October 15th, his body temperature was slowly raised as he was weaned from the paralytic drug. We were told he may or may not wake up. If he did, it would not be for at least 72 hours and, in all likelihood, he would not be himself. Against all odds, he woke up at 9 PM that night. Wednesday morning October 16th, he was taken off life support, intubation tube removed, and he correctly answered all questions posed to him by a neurologist. On Thursday, October 17th, he was moved to the cardiac step-down unit, out of intensive care. Friday, October 18th, he had a defibrillator implanted. Saturday, October 19th, he was released from the hospital. And in one shining moment, with our son and daughter on either side of him, he walked back home. Back across the street and back into our lives.
dark clouds dissipate – – honeysuckle blooms again bees hum in bright sun
Photo is a bit blurry as I was crying tears of joy when I took it. Written for Haibun Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets where today I’m hosting and asking folks to write about one shining moment in their lives.
Day 4 of national poetry month. The prompt from Imaginary Garden with Toads is to write a poem in the style of Gertrude Stein’s TENDER BUTTONS. I’ve chosen to write about jello, attempting to create a metaphor for life while at the same time, writing a factual description of this food. Challenging prompt!
Published in 1914, Stein’s TENDER BUTTONS is divided into three parts: Objects, Food, and Rooms. It avoids any use of gender specific pronouns. It is considered a masterpiece of verbal cubism and a failure at the same time. Here is an example directly from Stein’s text:
Embrace the darkness, my dear,
keep hold my hand.
Listen to the quiet.
Many have come before you,
many shall follow.
Breathe slowly, slower still,
until your body dissipates.
Darkness will become light
as we soar into the cosmos
feeling peace among the stars.
Written for dVerse, for both Monday’s quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title) which required the word “keep” and today’s Poetics which asks us to write in someway about black/darkness. Photo from pixabay.com