death, at your side...
no, heavenly is the wrong word
when one doesn’t believe in hell, heaven, zombies, reincarnation
and the rest of the foibles,
death at your side is... it is...
okay, why don’t I just go on talking
while you look for the right word,
atto primo, hospital
we were chasing each other on our wheel chairs,
mine squeaking so you’d know I was after you
as we roamed through the white corridors
cutting inattentive toes
crashing through glass doors
those that would open and those that would not
your wild hair flailing back
splinters of glass glinting in the neon lights like diamonds at Tiffany’s
my wheels crushing the big shards into smaller splinters
and my huge transistor radio blasting mean rock between the walls
until they got fed up with us, ninetagers, and our rowdiness
and send the guards after us
truncheons, dogs, pepper spray and thudding boots...
follow me! you screamed
dropping catheters, infusion bags, plasma bottles and diet-coke cans in your wake
and I followed suit along the wet trail
chuckling wildly at the sound of trailing curses...
another corridor, a few stairs bong-bong-bong we didn’t fall
the last stretch, perfect timing
the ambulance rear doors open, level with the floor,
you were already in the driver’s seat when I crashed in after you,
click, rear doors closed, locked, click, side doors locked,
kiss me! you screamed
crashing out through the gate
not waiting for it to open as legally and logically expected.
atto secondo, ambulance
it took them some time to get organized,
not everything is Hollywood flick efficiency.
by that time we were lost in the city
and then out of it,
windows fully open
allowing you to shout obscenities to all those cars
crawling alongside at legal speed,
overtaking them with screeching fury, almost on two wheels,
your blond, long hair fluttering like all the colors of rainbow
and freedom and freedom and freedom...
freedom! you screamed, then looked at me,
freedom, you whispered
as I leaned my head on your shoulder
and you put a withering hand around my neck,
the hospital’s yellow plastic bracelet dangling, a reminder of reality
in a moment of ecstasy.
six months of meticulous preparations -
decoy, timing, bribery (those guards were not really that slow)
and it was still touch and go.
finally, it was go.
your roots are white, I said.
I am ninety two, what would you expect, blonde? you laughed.
kiss me, you whispered.
first stop the car, I didn’t reach that far to miss the real fun, I answered.
you sure you can? you asked,
stopping the car on a deserted side road,
a few wild trees gazing at us, intruders, with green benevolence.
you sure you ready? you added, pointing in the general direction of my mid body,
I am, you concluded, pointing in the general direction of your head
which my wishful thinking translated as pointing to your mouth.
if I can not then I will, I answered proudly
pointing to a pocket bulging with stolen pharma boxes
of all kinds I could imagine - Viagra, Cialis, Levitra, Aspirin...
yes, so you can not claim a headache, you know...
the advantage of having left the teeth to their own, orphaned fate
was that all that was left was flesh
and our mouth stuck to each other with Magdeburgian force
while the rest of flimsy clothing deserted our bodies
and we lived the moment
like the youngest of breed horses after a month’s abstinence on Mars...
...there’s no air on Mars... as if I cared, as if you cared
as our groans and whelps scattered the crows a mile around
and dropped the leaves two miles around
and... shut up!... and I shut up
caressing you, caressing you, caressing you.
I didn’t even have to use them, I pointed to my pocket, proud again,
young again, man again, not piece of meat again.
they are coming.
the helicopter was making rounds overhead for some time now
and the sound of remote sirens joined the din,
we were dressed, smiling, ready.
well, I was really the wrong age, the wrong sex, the wrong... what the hell?...
and you started the monster up with one deft turn of key
one hand on the steering wheel
one hand holding mine
and started galloping up the hill at break-neck speed
the four wheel drive leaving any blaring siren hanging far behind
as it started gulping the distance to the top
in ever increasing madness...
it died half a mile before we reached the top. out of gas.
they shackled us,
took us to the station
and released us on grounds of... well, what grounds should one have
for locking up ninety plusers?
they just cut your driving license to tiny slices
then burnt it in front of your tearing eyes.
as if it mattered, as I knew when you side winked my way.
the hospital refused to have us back in
and we refused to be back in with them around us
so finally gave us a few pounds of medication
dropped any charges provided that we dropped any demands
and insincerely wished us well as they ushered us out of the door.
we wished everybody sincerely well
and left for home.
we locked the door behind us.
atto terzo, bed
sometimes I used the stuff in that bulging pocket.
sometimes I didn’t.
sometimes you were on top of me
sometimes I was on top of you
sometimes it was just indefinable.
sometimes, rarely, we just didn’t do it.
sitting cross legged at both ends of bed (and hoping we could get up later)
mouths wide open
and tossing pills to each other.
some hit the target, most didn’t and we painfully collected them from the floor
and tried again.
read to me.
I knew it was going to come, I just didn’t know when.
which one, love? Tennyson, Wordsworth, Cummings...
no, not Cummings, makes me think of similar sounding words and actions...
and you exploded in laughter at my disgusted look...
...Dickinson, Whitman, Parker, Byron...
You, lover. you made the you sound as if it started with a capital.
You, lover. unmistakable this time. capital.
I rummaged through the pile, picked one at random, opened it at random
and started reading.
first you listened.
then you crawled next to me.
then you crawled in my lap.
then you crawled all over me
and I dropped the book and joined in the crawling
immersing ourselves into absolute, devastating lust,
lecherousness, salacity, prurience,
and the only obstacle between us and myocardial infarction...
did you find the right word?
ok, reality doesn’t matter, belief or no doesn’t matter,
what matters is meaning.
so let’s leave it as is.