by Joyce Wakefield
I listen to you explain the difference
between a right brain thought and a left.
I am distracted by the smell
of cold on your face.
I want to lick it away like a child
with an ice cream cone
sticky fingers and sweet tongue.
Aware that I have been here before
I pause in your words.
I have slept in this flesh,
dreamed these winter bones.
Waking in the darkness between us,
I hear frost sweeping the porch,
edging toward the morning.
I reach for your hand.
What, you whisper, voice hoarse with dream.
My lips, swollen with you, cold,
My head matches the outdoors, foggy and muted. Fatigue plagues me. I've been pushing myself through so much, it catches me now. The spines of the hoar frost look to me what my back feels like. Razor sharp spindles that shoot pain through my back as it pops and cracks in the cold. The heating pad coupled with some Advil are my refuge. I still muster 3 hockey games on Saturday. But I pay for it with half the day spent in bed on Sunday.
Dr. Panwalkar nods when I tell him what he would normally say to me, "we'll see what the scans reveal in a couple of weeks." My back reveals change to me, but will the scans? Maybe its just a case of hockey-itis. Or massively overgrown puppy syndrome. Crosby is a tank these days and the strain it puts on my back and arm certainly contribute to the mess.
Next week I have a series of tests that will require me to be at the clinic 4 days out of 5. I have 3 separate MRI's to do, and one of them is a 3 hour session in the scanner. I will be sedated 3 out of the 4 days. I was initially taken aback with the long week they were proposing. But the silver lining to all of this? Since the study is dictating which tests we have to do, the study will likely pay for the tests.
Rick was playing with long exposures on the outdoor rink last week. He had 3 willing hockey players agreeing to stand for long exposures and then skate away as fast as they could. The effect is a ghostlike appearance.
As cool as the photos are, what spoke to me on another level, are the rink lights shining through the fog and the spiny extensions of frost.