Varnish and Rest and Walks

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Imagine what is, is not

with little regard for when, where why

we find solitude in the wood

a restful glance patience is

a reward to feel the drop of fatigue

to know the space of


an allowance is


hand made, man made,

shoe laces

we could study while this world unraveled

far beyond where the setting is


when are we standing in place

while sitting out the last race.

We might know this look,

yet how often is a motion

mistaken for settling

the ground solid

catches my tired eyes while watching

I remain passive

in a gentle

land of tarnish

buried in this, my varnish of security.

Rest Awhile

The man told me,

under no circumstance

can we live this way.


Think about nothing at all,

how would it hurt,

if for any few minutes of your day,

ya just check out,

decide not to,

figure leave it to later,

somebody else.


Ever want to stop trying

to listen, play, respond

to the insidious nature

of trying to be,

within the constraints of

society’s blues.


What might be delightful to you,

is someone else’s cue

to find a battle

deep within their soul;

that place that though,

nobody goes,

seemingly tucked away,

preserved pity,

everyone finds.


So maybe

at the end of the rope,

we could try a different angle,

perhaps letting the slack,

remain instead of the constant

taught fragments of indecision,

those that scream.

just when everything,

comes together in a most

significant way –

that special bond of hell.


Perhaps we just came here

to rest awhile …

hours later.

On Staying Awake

You see, if we remain awake

we pretend away the future

fight it out

and the next day doesn’t come

there is a psychosis

that goes hand in hand

with avoidance

late nights,

not letting our minds wind down

rather I want to ride that roller-coaster

that constant wave of wonder

that allows my mind

to simply co-exist with nothing

nothing at all.

The fear of falling asleep

knowing we will awaken

and go through it again.

So perhaps if the body

stays alert, or at least somewhat comatose

without rest,

perhaps that day of reckoning

the next one where the anxiety lies

perhaps that morning of sunlight

that plays with our reality

time and time again,

perhaps it will be prolonged

but then when

where, how do we imagine rest

in its absolute form?

We are common

we are wakeful

our balance is assuring our peace

Day Two – I want to take a walk

I awoke around 7 AM, after sleeping for about 45 minutes. Throughout the night I was basically in managed care, regulating my pain meds, and watching my heart rhythm on a regular basis, with monitors that beeped repeatedly all night. For me sleep was the ability to rest for 20 minutes at a time without moving around in order to keep the chest tubes in place to maintain steady drainage of fluid from the surgery. For the next two or three days, I chose not to look at my chest for fear of what I was about to see. I knew there had been some major adjustments, and I was just happy to leave things as is for a day or two.

I did wake up thinking about my family though. The nurse had told me our morning goal would be to get out of bed and sit in a chair. There would be no walking today – I would remain hooked up to a catheter for the next 72 hours. I was pretty impressed with that aspect of my care though. I thought not having to walk to the bathroom to pass urine was sort of a cool thing, I could get used to that. The things we find acceptable when recovering from a major surgery. So my next adventure began when the nurse came in and asked if I wanted to sit up for awhile.

Remarkably I got out of bed with assistance and while the tubes and wires were guided around me, sat down in a chair and immediately picked up the telephone. I called home and Sue answered, and I just wanted to assure her and the kids I was in a lot better shape than the night before, and actually felt pretty comfortable for the time being. Sue was relieved, and I was happy the kids would be relieved as well. The medical staff told me I looked pretty remarkable for the morning after surgery. I smiled inside and felt satisfied knowing I was still hooked up to a morphine drip. I think I was probably out of bed for about fifteen minutes when I realized it was time to take a nap. I grabbed my spirometer and drew a few breaths. The object was to get the meter to rise to the top in order to exercise my lungs. They had been collapsed during the surgery and needed to virtually be brought back to life. I drew back and blew out and reached about 65 to 70 percent before the chest pain took me aside. That was pretty good effort for the first day. I would top off at 100 percent by the end of that second day of recovery, but there would be additional moments where I couldn’t get the meter past 60 percent. Recovery would take time, and I couldn’t rush things. When I asked if I could take a walk, my assigned physical therapist said sure, I could walk from the chair to my bed, that was it for today. I set my sights on the morning, and was sleeping like a baby by around 8 AM.

One thing to remember is that while in a hospital the idea of sleeping for long periods of time was impossible. However, if I could sleep for 20 minutes without shifting the tubes in my chest, the act of which caused excruciating pain, I was pretty happy. If I moved wrong, one has to just imagine having a garden hose sticking into a fresh wound and every time you move, the sheath of the hose might readjust itself with your bare and raw skin. Good times.