Sick Bed Poems, Part 2

All poems written while sick in bed and then posted on Facebook.

I Love Saturdays

I was preparing to

Take a nap on my bed.

While staring out the window

There was afternoon,

Blue sky and green plants

Swaying in the wind.

There was dog sounds, car

Sounds and time going by

Too fast sounds.

Then a naked lady with

Beautiful breasts and

Trimmed brown pubic hair

Walked by on the telephone wire.

This is why I love

Saturdays.

Slavery

It is 7:28am.

A time of

Doing nothing. Just

Sitting here with

My coffee, my

Fever, my body

Aches- listening to

Records and watching

The morning outside.

I don’t want

To do anything

But the day

Ahead is filled

With adult responsibilities,

Which just means

Things that must

Get done that

You do not

Want to do.

Poop and Pride

This morning while

Picking up dog poop

I stepped in dog poop.

I became angry, indignant

At something so beneath me.

“I’m no better than poop,”

I reminded myself

Because pride never works.

I became humble

And cleaned the poop

Off my shoe.

My Wife

I’m often grateful

For the absence

Of fear in

My wife.

I’m so riddled

By fear most

Of my life,

Always present.

This is why

I’m often grateful

For the lack

Of fear in

My wife.

Laconian Laundromat

I went into a

Laconian laundromat

With a bag filled with

Dirty clothes.

But nothing made any sense

So I left.

Sick Bed #2

Day four of

Whatever it is

Confining me to

This sick bed.

This sick bed

Is causing my

House to smell

Like a sick

House.

I gathered enough

Strength to walk

Out into my

Backyard and urinate

Under the avocado

And lemon trees.

I watched a

Hummingbird, remembered health

And then I

Walked like a

Sick man back

Into my sick

Bed.

God’s Drilling

When a boy

I thought the sound

Of an airplane

Moving across the sky

Was God drilling a hole

To get out.

Short Poetry

I’m not a very good poet,

Not like some poets I know.

That’s why I like to

Write short poetry.

Pencils, Erasers and Indignation

I feel indignation

Much of the time.

But then I remind myself,

We are just pencil lines

Drawn through infinite space

Soon enough to be erased.

The Plastic Clarinet

There is a plastic clarinet

On my dresser.

It is red,

With blue and yellow keys.

It stands there, erect

Waiting

For someone to play.

But I never do.

Not anymore at least.

Childhoods forever gone,

So I wonder why I still keep

The plastic clarinet.

Birds and Bicycles

Birds are bicycles

Moving across the sky.

Don’t believe what anyone else says.

When you are lonely

Get on your bicycle and go after them.

You will see what I mean.

Health Care

When sick

I try

Not to

Go to

Doctors.

Instead I

Spend hundreds

Of dollars

On natural

Supplements.

Throats sprays,

Immune herbs,

Nasal decongestants,

Colloidal silver,

Vitamin C,

Eucalyptus oil,

Reishi mushrooms,

Wellness Formula,

Zinc lozenges,

Raw honey,

And sometimes

A random

Lover.

I assault

My sickness

With every

Natural remedy

I can

Find and

Afford.

However now

That I

Am married

And older

Lovers are

No longer

Apart of

My health

Care.

Why I am Canceling Work Today

I’m a therapist.

When I am

Ill, your problems

make no sense

To me. Your

Problems, my problems-

All a luxury

Of health.

Strong Character

Most people

Judge but

That is

Only because

Their character

Is weak.

How many

Of you

Assholes write

An entire

Book of

Poetry while

Stuck in

Bed, sick

With flu?

This is

What I

Call strong

Character.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Testicular Examination

The doctor wants me to get an ultrasound of my testicle. “Really?” This is what I thought when she told me. As if I had not already gone through enough.

I went in to see him because my testicle had been very swollen for half a year. I put it off for as long as I could, but when my testicle started getting in the way of my ability to walk and cross my legs, I decided to go in. He became a she because he was out sick. When they asked me if I didn’t mind seeing a female doctor I told them it didn’t matter to me. A doctor is a doctor is a doctor is a doctor as far as I am concerned. None of them know what the hell they are talking about.

It was bad enough when she asked me to pull down my pants and with a rubber glove on cupped my testicles in the palm of her left hand. As she turned my testicle around with her two fingers like some sort of fidget cube, I prayed to myself not to get an erection. It would be humiliating if I did. I made myself think of my grandmother in her hospital bed and I told myself there was nothing sexy about a female doctor examining your swollen testicle with a powdered rubber glove on. “Get it together man.” This is what I told myself. Fortunately, I succeeded in my efforts but the moment was awkward for both of us.

As I went to pull up my pants she told me not so fast. She asked me if I had ever had a rectal exam as she put some kind of jelly like liquid on the tip of her pointer finger. I told her I had not and she told me to turn around and that there was a first for everything. She told me that she just wanted to make sure that my prostate was ok. “Ok,” I thought. “Well, let’s just get this over with then,” I said.

She told me how to position myself with my pants down against the examination bed. I was  a good patient and did exactly what she said. When she inserted her jellied pointer finger into my anal cavity and poked around at my prostate I was surprised to feel a strange sensation of pleasure. It had been a very long time since I had felt the sensation of pleasure and did not expect it to come on so fast when I had a finger up my ass.

She told me that everything felt fine and that I could pull up my pants and I pulled up my pants faster than anyone in the history of human civilization has pulled up their pants. I felt very disturbed by the fact that my prostate exam felt so good but impressed that I was capable of pulling up my pants so fast. I fall in love quickly with any woman who can make me feel sexual pleasure so I tried to avoid developing feelings for the doctor as she explained to me her findings from my testicular and prostate exams.

“I would like you to get an ultrasound of your testicle.” This is what she said. “Really?” This is what I thought but did not say it out loud. I am a very compliant patient. My father was a controlling doctor so I know that more agreeable I am, the better the medical care I get will be. She gave me a number to call to schedule the ultrasound and told me to come back and see her a week or so after I have the procedure done.

It has been a few months now since the time I described above. I am yet to call that number, which I have tacked on the wall above my desk. I look at the number every single day but I don’t call. My wife keeps asking me when I am going to do it and I always say, “Soon.” The truth is I really, really do not want to call.

I have had many ultrasounds before. I have had them done on my chest, knees, foot, hand and the one thing I remember about all those ultrasounds is how good they felt. The warm heat from the ultrasound wand moving around in that jelly like substance all over my skin. It was kind of like a sexual fantasy, which was no sexual fantasy at all. I no longer masturbate or have sex with my wife or anyone else (although I am looking if you know anyone). I have not had a pleasurable sexual experience in a long time. I know that if I get that warm ultrasound wand rubbed all over my testicles, the outcome could be sticky.

Every single time I think about scheduling an appointment this imagine comes into my mind: The technician moving the warm wand around my testicle and me trying really hard not to get an erection. But then I do and both the technician and I feel very awkward. Then I orgasm all over the technician’s hand. How humiliating would this be? No way. Even though I am sure these technicians have experienced this before, I don’t want to be that guy. The pleasure I felt during the rectal examination was enough trauma for me.

But now it looks as if I am walking around with a large golf ball in my pants. My testicle has swollen to unbelievable proportions. I know that when people see me, my enlarged testicle bulging through my pants is the first thing they see. How could they not? My testicle is so large now that it is an obvious sign that something is out of place. All my pants are slim fit and at the rate my testicle is growing, it’s only a matter of weeks before none of my pants fit.

If I could just cut the testicle off to avoid having this ultrasound procedure done, I would. However, self-mutilation is not my thing. I am going to have to adopt an attitude of I Do Not Give A Fuck. I Do Not Give A Fuck if I develop an erection and ejaculate during the ultrasound procedure. I have been telling myself for years that I need to practice Not Giving A Fuck. I Give Too Much Of A Fuck what other people think and I disdain this about myself. It is a horrible way to live because then you go through life never really getting to be yourself. Those who Give A Fuck what other people think, live in bondage. I tell myself that this is a good opportunity to practice Not Giving A Fuck. “Just call and go get it over with,” I tell myself. Don’t Give A Fuck. But I still am yet to call. I am going to put it off for as long as I can because no matter how hard I try not To Give A Fuck, I still fucking do.

Stuff To Make Sandwiches With

Mayonnaise.

All of our lives are running away from us and all we have to let us know that this is happening is our withered reflections when looking in mirrors. I am someone who is continually aware of how my life is running away from me. Often I will look at pictures of people in the 1950’s and 60’s and think about how their lives have completely run away from them. I am well aware that I am up against the same fate, every moment of every day.

I have a particular practice or daily exercise that I employ for better managing the feelings of dread and futility that arise when a person is aware of their life running away from them. I make sandwiches. I try to make at least two sandwiches a day but on a bad day I will make five. There is no greater satisfaction in my life than eating a sandwich that I have made. The thicker the better. I do not enjoy thin sandwiches. Thin sandwiches are for those who are not courageous. Thin sandwich makers are so afraid of the realities of life that they do everything to calorically restrict themselves so they can feel the illusory impression of being immortal and unaffected by aging. I prefer thick sandwiches because not only do they satiate the more fear prone parts of my brain, but they also allow me to better enjoy a life that I know is running away from me.

I use the healthiest bread that I can buy. This means bread with a high fiber and seed content. Not only is this bread delicious but I do not feel so guilty after eating large amounts of it. I know that I have superseded my daily recommended fiber intake and this helps me feel more confident about the workings of my bowels. I prefer using organic mayonnaise on whatever high fiber bread I use, but since my wife is vegan I normally have to resort to using organic vegan mayonnaise. The good thing about using organic vegan mayonnaise is that I can use larger amounts of it and not feel so doomed to coronary heart disease. I also like to use large amounts of organic spicy mustard, the names of which I can never pronounce. The combination of organic vegan mayonnaise and organic spicy mustard usually and temporarily suspends any kind of existential dread.

My wife and I both try to keep our refrigerator loaded with stuff to make sandwiches with. My wife is younger than I. Not much younger in terms of the span of human history on planet earth but much younger in terms of the deterioration of the human body. Fourteen years can make a massive difference when it comes to the ravages caused by aging. But because my wife also suffers from a certain existential awareness (a fundamental signifier of an intelligent mind) she too is aware of life running away from not only herself but also from her beloved husband and her even more beloved three dogs. In a way I envy her youth. Even if in youth a person is aware of their lives running away from them they still have the underlying comfort of knowing that they still have a good amount of time to lose. Once you are older, the awareness of life running away from you fills you with more despair (or denial) because you know you have much less time to lose.

My wife has picked up the sandwich making practice from me. She also finds it an effective way to deal with the awareness of a run away life. I appreciate that she dedicates just as much interest in keeping our fridge filled with stuff to make sandwiches with as I do. Because my wife is still young enough where she still has the ability to have an incredibly attractive figure (which often provides a person with the fit illusion of being immortal) she does not make her sandwiches as thick as I do. She usually makes her sandwiches with things like organic vegan cheddar cheese, organic sprouts, organic pickles, organic lettuce or organic kale and organic sauerkraut. For some reason she always insists on toasting her seeded wheat bread, which is something I never do. This is another luxury of being young- you feel like you have more time to spend on doing trivial things. I never toast my bread, only because I feel like I just do not have the time. For her she still has a good amount of time to give to such superfluous things. (This is why most good art, literature, film and music is made in youth. A young person has more time to spend passionately dedicated to such things. Once a person is older they just want to spend time with life or living because there is less time and energy to give towards working at things that feel more superfluous the older and sicker a person gets.)

I stuff my sandwiches with a plethora of different organic things. I use various kinds of organic nuts, organic onions, organic vegan cheeses, wild tuna or wild salmon from a can, organic humus, organic pickles, organic sprouts, organic vegan sausages (usually uncooked), organic cabbage, organic kale, organic mung beans, organic sauerkraut, organic habaneros and organic baked barbecue potato chips for extra crunch. I find that stuffing my sandwiches with things that create a crunch effect allows me to discharge a lot of the anger and frustration that I feel with regards to a life that is running away from me and everyone I love. Crunching is a very effective way to deal with this chronic frustration that I feel in my life.

It requires mindfulness and slow movements to keep everything in the sandwich, rather than falling out onto the plate. What I have found is that with the right positioning of everything inside the sandwich and with mindful movements, overboard condiments can be avoided when eating a thick sandwich. Whatever things do fall out on to my plate, I make sure to eat once I am finished eating my sandwich. I look as this as a kind of dessert.

My grandfather, on my father’s side, used to do a similar thing. After the age of forty he was also very aware of life running away from him. He often spoke about how he could not believe how much older everyone was getting. “One minute they were young and filled with life and now they are older and filled with all kinds of unwanted obligations, wear and tear,” he would say when talking about friends, family members, old lovers and celebrities that he liked. Every day for lunch he would eat a large hoagie sandwich. He lived in Philadelphia where there was a hoagie/steak sandwich establishment on every corner. Philadelphians obviously are also very aware of life running away from them and deal with it by making and eating very large sandwiches. Have you seen how big these things are? Some people refer to them as subs, because they are so long. My grandfather would eat one all to himself. Everyday. All alone. A sandwich filled with not organic cheese, meat, hot peppers, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, mustard, mayonnaise, vinegar and oil. He would shake not organic pepper and salt on top and whenever he took me to a hoagie place on one of my yearly visits he would always say, “It is all in the bread kid.” To this day I still believe that to be true but instead of using freshly baked white sourdough bread, I use high fiber wheat or rye seeded bread.

I have found that making sandwiches on a daily basis has been an effective, short-term way for me to deal with the day-to-day knowledge that my life is running away from me. The thicker the sandwich the better. But I also realize that this is a short term solution. I have to keep making sandwiches, sometimes several times a day in order for it to work. Once I am done making and eating my sandwich it is a matter of an hour or so before my sense of life going quickly by returns. I notice when it returns because I feel somewhat depressed. This is usually when I will make another sandwich. If I am away from my home and not able to make a sandwich I will settle for having one made for me. It does not work as well, but it still eases the pain of knowing that it is all quickly passing by.

By the way, now it is Fall. I stay inside as much as I can when it is Fall. Fall is a season that can literally fall on you, so please proceed with caution. Look up, even as you eat sandwiches.

MY DISTURBED BRAIN (fear and loathing)

Why do you say this?

What?

That your brain is distrubed.

Because it is.

Why?

It is almost always working against me.

How?

Well……..Last night I woke up in the middle of the night with my brain racing. It was churning at a high speed. So many vertiginous thoughts happening one after the next.

Vertiginous. Thats a good word.

Pulled it out from nowhere.

Good job. Your mind can’t be that disturbed to think up words like that.

Defenestration.

Thats a good one also.

My favorite word.

Lets get back on track. So you woke up in the middle of the night with a brain running wild?

Yes. And it kept me up all night. Thought after thought after thought after thought.

This is weird since you are such an advocate for staying present and not getting caught up in thought.

I know. I tried all of my meditation techniques but they did not really work. May have made a subtle difference but did not work much. I realized that my brain is really disturbed. It just is continually sneaking off into the past and the future. It is always judging and worrying about what could happen in the future. It is continually resenting people and things that happened in the past. My brain causes me a great deal of worry, fear, anger, resentment and on and on. It seems to sabotage my well-being and contentment in the present moment.

Why do you think this?

It is just always what it is doing! It is messed up. I don’t want to drink. It starts to tell me how I should just have a few drinks. I don’t want to watch porn. It starts to remind me how great and fun watching porn is. It seems my brain is programed to work against me!

Hmm. Seems like your brain continually thinks of things in the future. You brain is preoccupied with what future event could be like. It has a very difficult time just staying right here, right now.

Yes. And not just that. I can not trust my brain. It is not rational. For example, yesterday I did not want to go to work. I often do not want to go to work. I think that I dislike my job. I loath it. Then I go to work and come home from work and realize that that was not so bad. Now I have some money. I think that I should be more grateful for the job I have. I should be more interested in it. Then I realize that I do not have as many clients as I would like. Various clients keep canceling on me. I am working less than I need to. So I wake up in the middle of the night worried about money. Worried about not being able to get enough clients. Worried that I will have to find a different job. Worried that I am not making enough money. Angry that clients are canceling on me.

Sounds like madness.

It is! One minute I loath going to work. Then I am terrified of not having enough work. I panic because I feel like my business is falling apart.

You would think you would be happy that you do not have to work as much right now!

I know! But I am not! I am worried about it. I have bills to pay! And then why do I always loathe going to work but after work I feel like I should have more gratitude and that I am so lucky to have the job I do? It is just craziness.

Sounds like you are very confused.

Obviously.

What is a better word for confusion?

Vertigo.

Yes. You have psychological vertigo.

Thanks. But can’t you provide me with any deeper insights than that?

All I can really do is agree with you that your brain is disturbed. I think you are correct. You may even have a slight mental illness. You need to meditate regularly. You need to get a good nights sleep. But most importantly my friend…..

Are we friends?

Yes, I think we are. I am just the wiser and more insightful part of you.

Ok.

Most importantly, you need to stay present. In this moment, right now, you are fine. You have a roof over your head, you have some work, you have your health, you have food. You are doing ok right now. Do not get too far ahead of yourself. I realize that you are making less money right now and that can feel scary, but you are ok. Let the past and the future go. You can worry, worry, stress about what the future is going to look like but you really do not have much control over how the future will play out. You don’t know that there will not be a major earthquake in twenty minutes that wipes everything out. Worrying about the future is useless. Your disturbed brain will project worst case scenarios into the future. It is like throwing a pebble into the ocean- you have no real clue where it will land. Don’t listen to your brain. Enjoy your life right now. Stay present. Practice what you preach.

Yes. I agree. It is just very difficult. Seems my brain sneaks off into the future or past without my permission. It causes my entire nervous system to freak out. Do you think this has anything with being Jewish?

I do. I think us Jews have a predisposition to unnecessarily freak out and see gloom and doom on the horizon.

Our brains are wired to worry.

Yes. But please. No Porn. No booze. Smoke a little weed if you want. Stay present. Really work on just being here right now and reminding yourself that everything is fine right now.

Moment by moment.

Yes, that is it. Take life moment by moment. Time for me to take off.

Where is it that you go when you are not here?

Far away from your disturbed brain. It ain’t much fun being in there when it is acting up.

I understand.