A Marriage of Inconvenience

3:30 am. My appointment immanent this morning at 11:30 for a full body CT scan, with contrast. No eating for three hours prior to the scan. No problem. No problem. Growing weary of cancer this week, two long appointments. One with my palliative oncologist to discuss pain intervention. Today’s to peer into my body to check up on my cancer’s progression – for better or worse.  In sickness and without a hope of tea; health, cancer eloped with me into a marriage meant for divorce. And not a single day since diagnosis goes by without the thoughts of dumping it for good. Our two- year anniversary is next month. So too, my husband and I celebrate our anniversary on Pi – 3.14. Of course, he’s a brilliant polymath and I’m an English major. Poetic justice on all fronts.

In metastatic disease, one never ever files for divorce. Oh, there’s paperwork. Like my wishes for the end of life procedures, who decides in the absence of my own ability to do so what wishes they carry out on my behalf. Fun stuff. Who wants the job? My husband took it reluctantly, mournfully. Last week I asked him to cremate me and make a glass marble with my remains. I joked he could keep me in his pocket and play with me whenever he wanted and I’d never complain again. He finds my humor very weird sometimes.

Last night I wanted just to laugh. We watched a stand up comedienne Kathleen Madigan and Craig had trouble sleeping afterwards. I came downstairs to try and work a bit on my Etsy shop. And here at 4 am I blogg in the kitchen, standing on the cold floor. Simon, my cat, drops mousies at  my feet telling me it’s time for bed. Rrrrrrraow! I cry in his fur. He licks my nose. He’s waiting for me on the stairs.

Goodnight house, goodnight kitchen, goodnight blog, I’m done bitchin’.

Result. Nothing’s new. Nothing grew. No better no worse. It’s like my marriage. Nothing new. Nothing grew. I need more action on both fronts.

Stay tuned. Storms brewing. Not like tea. But like ideas.  A brain storm fronts on the horizon.



I can’t sir. I am not prone tonight to eat heaving and

Sounding out sloppy syllabic English.

Sisyphus gave blood I heard yesterday

Helping out our cause at the five and dime.

When outnumbered run faster, he remarked

Wiping his brow and tossing aside a bead from his neck.

Colors streaking and bleeding while

Ten Red Crossing Guards walked down hill

To deliver us to a corner. Each and every cell

Even at the  coroners. Then cohorts we went ringing

All their bells dying to laugh at elderly crooks.

Well, dear, didn’t we?

Of Main, 1st, Acme, Arapaho.

Why do you even know – tell me –

What neighborhood streets fired off,

Sizzled by before the funerals.

Our ages ranged then arranged from

Dead red four two beats and too, too orange ade.

Sleepless? Well, sleep less.

Circadian arcane rhythms in the nacht muzhik

Dreamless drum beat Heartland 3-1 but who cares

Because tonight its core cooled just enough

Down to the touch networked our fingers enraptured

Engraved in graves for the book of the year  of the  dead

Picture us happy with Sisyphus’ Stoney strain

Upwards, shooting from frozen dreams

Bodies consumed by frequencies

And waves of electronic singing 180 degree miles away.

Off handedly I followed the paths of railway miles yet

So far only the shofar sings in the deserted diner.

I traded a philosopher’s stone for water sieved

Through the mazes etched in the lime of aquifer stones.

100 year contract for signing away, singing and astray

Your dearest routes and longest Rights of way.


Fighting You

Fighting You

Such loud conversational regrettable covers me.
Dragged through love by fishing nets hauled over lea.
Splayed, filleted, pocketed and indeed steeped.
The Robber of Roses Steals Only from Sleep.

Gypsies wait, dry and cracked into factions.
Weakly precious, laughing at ungrateful retractions.
Irascibly unsheathing a gun or a fifth of sloe gin.
That story, at showtime juts about alive and in sin.

Deriving the lie but their funding asunder.
Chattering cold court continuously in slumber.
Queens speak to duses, lady of dubious decency.
Gifts of morality, blue lips like robins eggs, then a prophecy.

Was I a wife? What you owed me? The morbid dissection.
I sit in the lens of rhetorical questions.
Unfolding pet tricks inspired, prior versions.
Thoughtless and keyless all habits and perversions.

Bellicose drapes us covered in lessons, but don’t cry for me.
Talk to learned creatures so hot, simple and out at sea.
Our brows creased then stones cut by axe or by pyre.
(What did she ask?) Finally sighing, you fight me.



Lightning struck the tree in the neighbors yard,
Last year in the midsummer’s knife we dreamed of storms 
Laughing now, loving how Ions sweeten the air.  
As slowly you bend to greet the wind, a genuflection of retort,
Dull August sunshine laughing back – the cumulonimbus roll by.
The wind picks up sticks, twigs, leaves.
Heavy air transfers electric waves and static. The radio plays:
‘Hold it right there if you move my station won’t come in tonight.’
I sweat for doing this too often too much. You won’t feel the dampness of me.
My neck white and wet, cleaved by a hammer and chisel and standing,
Feet dug into gritty land and soil.
I hoped you’d dream of me, 
And remember more than an unexpected, expensive side trip.
Yesterday, to save the hung out whites I employ old wives tales. 
Then you recall scents of chlorine and lyme, 
Rung out and out to dry in the midwestern sun.
Though I knew anything could cement this offering,
But my ivy hair clung to my neck as I wave you on.

Years ago, I recall, you waved from a sedentary yet strategic position 
On the board where you took my queen and laughed like a boy,
On his seventh birthday with a whole sweet buttercream cake.
This morning my fingers wrapped around yours, with their crescent white nails.
You hung up my camel coat on the rack in the station by a black over painted door.
No signs to tell us about things like ‘open’ or ‘closed’ – can you remember what language?
A sweet cafe sent steaming hot streams of vines climbing the grey sky 
Through chimneys on a grey, closed in morning, bowls of cafe au lait.
Longer still, your mind, awash with mercurial dreams of, well what then?
Warm lunchtimes in coastal unpronounceable towns.
Sleepy swollen people lined the streets with daydreams and 
A few with somnambulant nightmares.
We never napped. 
In those days anyway – my god,
The sights endless d o p p l e r effected photographs my mind takes in
The sights soundless clouds of brand new cameras clicking 
Sticking to your side like the eight year old child who begged
For a dollar, a single US dollar for a tour of the red capital.
Please, I ask you please to stop and rest a while and 
The dark deed of the night gave you away like that dollar.
You left me on the train alone and frayed, 
And my clothes loosely hung from my bent shoulders.
You took me one night to a vapid blind wine tasting.
Paper bags. Covered pots of everyone’s best try.
We make up words like lilac and lively
Plummy and chewy and spit out into tin bins.
It’s okay to spit now you say as you violently express streams of purple.
Blue red out of your mouth like a bullet into a practice target dummy.

So I’ve got to get going. Get nails into the wall and hang our memories
The one of you I have so vividly and hammered into my hands and feet.
Oh, you believe I’m not really understanding who that man belonged to,
The white sheets hang on the windless day on the hillside of the coast
No lightning here, no thunder, don’t worry you say.