Friday, March 11, 2005
and just to note a few bloggy things seen, tho I am not concentrating well. peccavi, I shall not even provide links at this time, too much work and focusing. so, to wit: Jack Kimballs's MARQUEES are fascinating, especially the Hannah Weiner. Hannah's seems a wonderful representation of what she describes as her writing experience. David Lrsen at Alli Warren's blog, well I can only skim at this time, but it seems bubbling with a thing there, right there. if I had more time/focus I would spend it with Whimsy Speaks and Wood's Lot, those 2 blogs are especially rich, if you have Keatsian Indolence on your side. Henry Gould aint kidding about his writing. I admire his mission. beyond that I will only say that I choose my blog roll carefully. and finally, note that The Onion wonders: does Hillary have what it takes to defeat the Democrats in 2008? forword.
I m stuck with this so I will continue. visted my father at the rehab, but he's in a private room: it is hospice care. by god, he flinched to see me, thinking I was about to roll him over for a cleaning. he said several times: I want to sleep. dad, I want that too. Beth and I were doing Boy Scout salutes with him, on leaving the rehab, which this time didn't work. he just looked at us. but I did an exagerated wave with my hand as I moved away, which he imitated. connect. thank you. I left the room ahead of Beth, eyes downward, passing a nurse, engulfed in tears. Beth spoke with the nurse, a latina, who said to Beth, he's in pain. she called my name, came over and gave me a long hug, telling me her brother died recently and what sounded like a prayer. I couldn't hear it all but the words were secondary. it was a surprising moment. we came home and shifted furniture back as it was, and removed all the tools for invalid, the hospital bed, walker, oxygen, etc. my father was more than those, and still is. we don't have to define people just by their limitations. he probably understood me least of all my brothers, as we were growing up, for I was and am so not the engineer that he was. yet the years allowed me to understand wherefrom he came and how, and he too gained an acceptance of my life. so a love we won, finally. I suppose this sounds sententious. I'm trying to see what it is I should carry with me, in the further on.
my father came home from rehab on tuesday. an ambulance dropped him off, as he hasn't been able to leave his bed in a couple of weeks. I didn't realize until the day before that he would still be on oxygen. we moved his bed into a bigger room to accomodate all the stuff needed to facilitate his care. 24-hour caregivers would help us with the care, for 2 people (with a child) clearly could not handle the load. my father is bedridden, vey weak, needs 2 people to move him. when he went in the hospital he could walk with a walker, get around, and he had a healthy appetite. he came back with zero appetite and barely willing to drink water. he'd been on IV up till the morning he left the rehab. the idea that the might improve at home was what fueled the move. I sure didn't know what was right, emotion and logic compete. went thru the intake process with the company providing 24 hour caregivers, and another that provides physical therapists and nurses to monitor my father's condition. the 1st caregiver arrived at 3:00 in the afternoon. the morning had been mild, foggy and rainy. it turned cold during the afernoon. my father was settled in. not willing to drink water or eat. and he had diarrhea. he had lost a lot of weight, must be less than 160, and incredibly stiff. the caregiver, David, needed help moving him. my father was confused. he howled in pain and, I think, indignity. he used to be a model patient, do what people said. and to prevent bedsores, my father needed to be moved every 2 hours. by late afternoon it was snowing and bejesus cold. hellish. the wind was vicious. sometime in the evening, David ran out to move his car off the street, and it was a phantasmagoric scene watching him struggle to scrape the windows and move the car. the snow blew perfectly horizontally. I went to bed maybe 10:00. Beth stayed up for the shift change and beyond. the 2nd caregiver, Annabella, sent her to bed. I woke several times hearing my father complain. in the morning I helped with cleaning and moving my father, which woke Beth. I also shovelled Annabella out. the 3rd shift arrived, a young man named Med. he was extremely gentle. we'd found that apprising my father of what we were going to do and asking if that ws okay made things easier, but Med aready knew that. by his accent, I'd guess that Med was born in Africa, tho I didn't inquire where. he graduated from a local public school. he'd say to my father, Mr Otis, I am going to roll you on your side, is that okay? well, it wasn't super okay, as my father didn't like it and howled some, but he acquiesced better as things went on. but took very little water or food, we're talking mere sips of water and juice. more intake stuff, with one of my brothers, a nurse and Med talking over my father's condition and care. I started to cry. I felt so much weight on me. Erin and I went ot the gym in the afternoon, to work some of it off. my oldest brother and his wife visited, and my father ate 4 saltines and some smoothie, asked for his watch and even conversed a bit. he slept thru the night, and the morning too. ther was a 2 hour gap when no caregivers could be scheduled, and my father just slept. he really fought when he was cleaned and changed later. would take nothing. well, Med has been able to give him his medications, heart stuff, crushed up with a little water. I'm not sure how successful the rehab was at that. Beth and I completely exhaustd fron the stress and the hours, and more more stress. we realized we couldn't do it. my father hardly recognizes home as home. I told my brother who handles my father's affairs. so yesterday, on my father's 94th birthday, we decided to send him back to the rehab. today, this morning. I have done a lot of caregiveing in my time, years of it. Beth nursed her stepmother at home thru a long cancer decline and death. we reached a point. logically we know we did what we could, yet it weighs on us. and we know that my father needs an IV. he's shutting down. my broterhs and wives came by yesterday evening to recognize my father's birthday. when I came in, we'd been out with Erin, I burst into tears. burst.
Monday, March 07, 2005
I suppose the next step after getting a tarot deck is to file my teeth all pointy and Crowleyesque and go looking for goats to slaughter. hmm, that would probably demand a professional, which would cost ducats, could be messy too... hmmm... okay, but a mix of rational and irrational marks poetry, yes? structural and procedural issues abound in poetry. yet work in which all that one perceives is the demands of these elements, that work is lacking. I mean, if you only notice the rhyme scheme developement of a poem, or the Fibonnaci series tracing off, and not 'the poem itself' (that machine or flying object), then something's gang agley. likewise if mighty inspiration is the only engine to a work, that too is tired and agone: Walt you contain too much! I like Jung because he thought of himself as a medical doctor, yet he was willing to loop out of the ride. at one point in his life, he started setting aside an hour a day to play with children's toys. harbinger of sand therapy (basically playing in a sandbox, to open highly protected paths). I see tarot as a similar mechanism for opening. the past 2 days I've been dealing with family issues surrounding my father's return home tomorrow. I feel like when my father dies, I will not see my family again. those types of issues, and very present ones, obviously. Beth did a tarot reading yestreen with me. you cannot help bringing what is closest to you into what you see in the cards. just as you would with a work of art. yeah, there's something irrational there, just as dreams have a morsel of the irrational to them. yet they are rational mechanisms. I can see the rationale of tarot, or other forms of divination. but then that guy at Starbuck's saying 'the Bible told me so', and his science friends stuck in their vocabulary. well, I'm thinking on it all.
Sunday, March 06, 2005
the latest road trip. into the car after 3:00. a last second wish to get out. too late, say, to hit a museum or such. north on 95, still 128 to me. up to Saugus, where a sign noted the Saugus Iron Works. as a Cub Scout I visited there on what I remember was a significantly hot day. I keep the camera busy, of course, as the landscape peels by. the mills and factories of New England are a characteristic of the region, and oddly comforting, even tho mercantilism has left many a blotch, here and elsewhere. North Adams Massachusetts for instance possesses a canyon of factory buildings that are pretty oppressive, looming, but luckily the Muesum of Contemporary Art has taken over many of them. next door in Adams Massachusetts, one gets the idea that suicide might be a favoured pastime. the iron works, we discover, is a lovely setting, a 17th century emblem of busy colonists. the info palace is closed, alas, likewise the grand angular building there. I love this stuff. visions of what was there before everything else landed. back south toward Lexington, where Erin wanted to get some Magic cards. no wait, we stopped at a coffee shop for coffee and bagels. Lexington is the other end of mercantilism. I grew up there and I can say, it is turning into Wellesley. if you know Wellesley, you know them's fighting words. Magic cards are game cards that are vociferously traded. a man told me his 12 year old son was making $50 bucks a week buying and selling them on EBay. Erin's strictly a player, tho hot to trade for something useful for his decks. the store has a couple of table's where dissolute boys can play all the livelong day. Erin got his goods and then we went to Barnes & Noble. there's a castle of literary merchandise. I used to feel uncomfortable there. tho their poetry section is rather large, given low expectations, I've got all the classic books (dead white guys) and can't scare up interest in many of the contempoets. but there's otherwise so much there. and the smell of Starbucks coffee. we made a solemn grab recently, on the pretext that I needed some Jungian texts, which just primed the pump. this time I aimed for a tarot deck. interest deriving from my reading of Jung. the tarot images are so dreamlike and pregnant, that has piqued my interest. it seems like a procedure is involved, one that I can liken to writing procedures. I mean, I have this one sense of procedural writing, be it flarf or aleatoric as of Mac Low, that one goes thru these methods to distract one's self so that the writing can proceed. to avoid relying on that built up artist brain that we've been training for years. and in that subversion, well, something happens. which the artist brain will claim, genius that it is. with tarot or other such divinations, the big thinker is defenestrated (temporarily) and the subconscious peeps out these ideas that have been brewing. dreams are a more obvious example, but I am fascinated by the power of the images of the cards. I also hate the sound of occult, don't get me wrong. so I got a deck, Beth got a book called Why We Run (or some such), which really is about why we do so. Beth always finds different books, open to what catches her eye, whereas I tend to have something in mind and go get it. I might do a shelf, but quite a bit less often stumble on an unexpected gem. obviously Beth's is the better method but I am impatient in the store. it's all interesting, basically, so I focus. Erin got a manga book: teaching our children to read backwards!!! that was our family outing, outed as a family.
some lovely photographs by Marian Jordan Lewandowski. these are professional grade pictures. that means the photogarpher worried about focus, composition, visual interest and all those other minor elements that I don't have the time to bother with. I'm too busy snapping the shutter and cursing that I 'missed it'.