Thursday, June 25, 2009

We had a scare, but it seems now that things are looking up. Joan was diagnosed with a melanoma on her left arm this month, a complete surprise to us all. She had it removed yesterday, and the surgeon described it as thin, shallow. Dr. Yeh, the surgeon, thought there was a very low chance of it having spread. They biopsied the appropriate lymph nodes just in case. I refer to it in the poem below, so I didn't send it out till after we got the outpatient surgery done yesterday and knew whether fear or hope was more justified. Whew!
A lot's going on in the poem below. . .

Summer Solstice ’09

the morning wakes cool & drizzly
and continues that way through the day
up here in Massachusetts,
it’s hard to honor the Sun at its zenith
when clouds membrane themselves
between us and what’s beyond them in the sky,

last night a magical evening at Fenway,
though my Braves had less than the mighty Sox,
the beer as watery as our fifth inning pitching,
every seat filled,
and filled with fans fiercely faithful,
for Father’s Day, my son gave me that old-time religion of baseball,
the "Show" Crash Davis rhapsodied about,
the venders, the colors, the loudspeakers, the cheers
like being at a circus, the seats like coach in an airplane,

today we savor our grandchildren, both sweet and fiery,
brilliant and beautiful, handfuls but what a joy to have them in hand,
circling each other, and the four year old, on her own
doesn’t seem to mind when she eclipses the one year old,

we fly back home late afternoon,
our plans all changed to deal with a recently-diagnosed lesion on Joan’s arm,
the prognosis fine to scary at this point,
I don’t want to imagine a turning to the worst, yet I fear it,
the prognosis hidden from me like the Sun today,

in the sleek cocoon of a modern jet
we fly out of the Northeast, quickly climb above the clouds
where bright Sun, on this longest day, dazzles the eye
and still has to hide from the land,

back in the Southeast, the Sun has broken through
and the day is 25 degrees hotter,
all that which is growing seems poised and full--
the blueberries, squash, beans, potatoes, first tomatoes and blackberries,
all ready for gathering,
the second crop of bluebirds is busy at the nest,
and I expect eggs when I check them tomorrow,
I hope better for the progeny than the black snake that got the first crop,

as dusk deepens I sit outside
with mosquitoes harrying me a bit,
sweat on my brow till a breeze cools me a bit,
the lightning bugs are ubiquitous,

the Sun has stalled in the heavens
and we wait for what change will come upon us soon.

by Henry Walker
June 21, ‘09

1 comment:

Ike Walker said...

I love the phrase "handfuls but what a joy to have them in hand".

I am intrigued by the concept of "crops" of bluebirds. Perhaps this is how the snake sees them?

I think the Crash Davis phrase you are looking for is "The Show".