Friday, January 07, 2011

Poetry Friday: The Vocabulary of Sickness

I've been sick with ickiness all week. Last night it broke, I think, and the attendant conversations prompted this poem (though I use the term loosely and with apologies to all true poets.)

The Vocabulary of Sickness 
by me

"Something broke
in my head,"
I said
to my family,
as I stared
into space.
"Oh, no!" they replied,
staring intently
at my vacant eyes.

"No! In a good way!" I clarified,
returning to firm ground
and shaking clear
the broken parts.
"The cold,
I mean,
or this flu,
or whatever this is,
is breaking.
That's what I meant.
When I said 'broke.'"

"Oooooh," they said,
a collective sigh
of loving relief. 
"Good." Nodding.
"That is good."

And later when
my children asked again,
"How do you feel, Mom?"
I said,
after a searching pause,
"I feel ...
as if
I might
feel better ...
makes sense."

"It does!" said my oldest.
"I know just what you mean!"

"Yes!" said my middle, "yes, so do I!"

"Poor Mommy," said my youngest. 

And so it goes

Poor Mommy is rich
in worried looks, 
tender sighs,
a soft pillow.

Tomorrow is here.


The Poetry Friday round up is at Live. Love. Explore!


tanita davis said...

This is both funny, and totally understandable -- and I'm glad you're feeling better, Karen.

Jeannine Atkins said...

Oh hurray for tomorrow and all the richness, (but not the ickiness) along the way. I, too, knew just what you meant.

Irene Latham said...

What a fantastic title for a poem! I feel like it might infect me! In a good way. :) Thanks for sharing.

Toby Speed said...

We could tell you were feeling better from the humor in your poem! Glad the ickiness broke, Karen.

susanwrites said...

I'm glad you felt better enough to write this! I love this part:

Poor Mommy is rich
in worried looks,
tender sighs,
a soft pillow.

Anonymous said...

St. Andre Bessette said to a friend who suffered: "The value of suffering can only be understood in eternity."

jama said...

Glad you're feeling better, Karen. :)

sarah said...


I'm glad you're feeling better :-)

Margaret in Minnesota said...

This is such a lovely poem, Karen. Include it in your book (when it comes out) (your book of poetry) (that I'm sure you're writing) and I'll be the first in line.

Karen E. said...

Thanks,everyone! If I hadn't already been feeling better, your comments would have buoyed me to health. :)