Saturday, December 17, 2016

Happen Here Rest Home

Coughing, asleep, half awake, coughing. Linda rubs my back to wake me. Gets up in the dark, is gone long enough for me to go back to fitful coughing sleep, returns and rubs my back awake again. Has me sit up on the edge of the bed, and hands me the glass teacup Tass & Jeremy brought me from England in 2001. WTH: nobody is allowed to touch this cup but me, but regaining wakefulness, I take a sip. Green tea with lemon and honey. Soothing, soothed.

Still dark, the room is still dark, curtain closed, but the kitchen light is on. I glance at the clock: oh-two-oh-five hours. Uh oh. “Two-oh-five, is this the day you’re taking me to the nursing home?” She chuckles but, not speaking, her silence is my answer: this is the morning. It must be far away that we’re up so early, to drive, or put me on an early plane. Or bus. It will be a bus with a toilet, but clogged, overflowing, sloshing, the door locked but seeping into the passenger space, the bus driver playing music full volume over the intercom. 

Someone will collect me at destination and take me, probably in a jacket called strait, to my new home. If I break out, no point, I’ll have no money for a ticket home, and it’s too far to walk back. Speaking of, where is the nursing home that we're up so early? Maybe on the moon? Or in the mountains on the far side of the sun, where grow the flowers whence came the healing cordial that Father Christmas gave Lucy that winter morning before spring and the battle. I’ve loved Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, and all of Harry Potter, but my everlasting beloved is Chronicles of Narnia, all of it. And as with innocent, wide-eyed Harry on the Hogwarts Express in the first book and movie, my love will ever be The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
What to do today? There’s Jadis and Sauron and He Who Must Not Be Named. Fascinated with and a minor student of early 1930s Europe, I’m afraid. We, humanity, have been here before. Now this memory dark and foreboding and Sinclair Lewis was wrong and will there be no hero martyr and where’s the sanity - - - 1984 and Darkness at Noon. Fools. Rats.

Last meal before we leave for the bus station: Willapoint oysters broiled on whole wheat toast.

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