Sunday, July 31, 2011
Matt gets sick; finds his own poem about sickness
We learned in Distant Cousin (volume 1) that Ana Darcy Méndez was born on the planet Thomo with an enhanced immune system. On Earth she has stayed remarkably healthy, with a few minor exceptions. Her family has generally been healthy as well, with only occasional colds, headaches, or upset digestive systems occurring from time to time.
Once, however, Matt had the flu, which he thought unfair, since he and his children always got flu shots. He spent a number of very uncomfortable days, as anyone who has had the flu will understand. His family tended him compassionately, though he found it difficult to appreciate their solicitude at the time. The sick, Leo Tolstoy once wrote, are not interested in the illnesses (or much else) of others.
Later, he came across a poem by George Bilgere that wonderfully encapsulated the experience of recovering from such a miserable experience. All in all, it brought back the glorious feeling of once again being fully alive and well, something we all too often tend to take for granted--that welcome sensation of eagerness for food, for company, and for all the sensual experiences we had been unable to appreciate when we are miserably sick.
As far as we know, he kept the poem to himself rather than sharing it with his wife. We are not sure why, but it may be the sensual conclusion of the poem. It surely could not be because of "the baker's store," where "everything smells like warm baguettes."
Right click to open in another window the poem Joy, by George Bilgere.
See other poems the Méndez family loves in the right column, under the photo of the LOVE sculpture, including "The World Begins at the Kitchen Table."