Disabilities and Health


Tick, tick one finger straining upwards
teaching as it goes – how to do what it does
to the other nine who have forgotten.

Teaching me how to raise my arms
by trying to flip ice chips in my mouth
and laughing myself silly
at the picture I must make.

Rehabilitation home number one –
glaring light room – another joins me
Left alone, scared, confused, hours by myself
Moved to another room, roommate a schizophrenic
demensia ridden person screaming all night
for three nights – I can’t get away, don’t know what to do
feel like I’m loosing my mind.

Until she gets really sick and, right next to me, dies.

Rehab dept. – Bars – stand up and walk
are they crazy? Can’t even stand, can’t move legs
on my own or not, whichever.

Okay – lay here and raise five pound weights
Are they really that nuts?  Have they read my file?
I can’t even lift my arms.
Exit Rehab One

Carried like a lump of coal
entering rehab center two
living in bed, succession of roommates,
put in the frequent fallers club
just could not stay put
put an orange bracelet to
signify my disgrace?

Month after month
an eternity of exercises, the Sopranos
(Roommate number 2, or 3?)
finally took a shower

My own walker. deluxe RED with basket, seat.
Walking. Feels so good to move on my own.

Home again. Visiting nurse says
I’m depressed. Is he kidding?
Look at me! Where do I go from here?
Of course I’m depressed.
Medications, Inertia, Agony,
Continuing Pain,
Endless thoughts.

All in all, a grand time.
Something to tell the grandchildren.

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