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Saturday, 1 March 2014

Nice Surprise


Untitled: photographer unknown, n.d: posted by  _elinor, 14 February 2014

There toward the end of that last millennium, with only about sixty more years to go, when things were finally beginning to become just that little bit clearer, it was thought time to provide the child a soft, loyal, companionable stuffed friend.

But by then, it was perhaps too late.

The mask had slipped just enough to reveal the inchoate fear encroaching. What was it, merely a passing shadow, there, behind the child's untrusting eyes. That which had been suspected yet not thus far seen would indeed soon enough become actual, as incipient things have a way of doing.
First it's stuffed bunnies they're giving you. Next it's ice cream and then the nice surprise -- you're at the hospital, having an operation. 


Guetteur: photo by Anne Fleur Sire, 11 November 2012


ACravan said...

Wonderful. I had a "lazy eye" when I was young and my "surprise" operation was to fix the weak muscle. Just before going under I remember being told that I was being given x-ray vision. All I got was pain and an eyepatch and the "I'm a pirate" shtick wore out quickly. My brother was surprised by tonsil removal and I'll never forget his untrusting eyes following that procedure. Curtis

TC said...

One of the most chastening experiences of my alas rather rue-laden later adult life was the melancholy perusal of the Baby Book in which my poor mother had inscribed my tender unfolding vita, so gamely and earnestly and industriously kept, this narrative of unfortunate reversals beginning early on and settling into a fairly predictable trend at a point where the story abruptly breaks off, seemingly out of mercy.

Hazen said...

Nicely put together. There are dimensions of word and image here, overtones . . . I thought for a second this might be a “Sent from my i-Phone” dispatch from hospital—though I know such paraphernalia is not in your kit. After reading the line about stuffed bunnies and surprises I said, “I hope this goes well.” Then I heard the macabre giggle . . .

I still hope all goes well. You never know.

ACravan said...

I would find it unbearable to look at my baby book, if my mother had kept one (I don't know if she did), but I've really enjoyed looking at Caroline's, which included a place where she herself made entries. It seemed pretty happy and encouragingly urgent as she recounted daily comings and goings (mainly to Weezy's)on her "two-wheeler." Curtis

Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore said...


Seeing the scaffold at the end of the road
or a steamroller coming toward you

or a herd of elephants bearing down
or looking into the maw of a tiger

on your morning stroll

his teeth and back of throat
and his greater existence

about to surround you
and all around you palm trees

sway and water still
rushes to its destination and

birds fly into branches and
continue to sing in fact

the whole universe is now a
polyphonic birdsong some trilling

happily some crooning mournfully
light playing its kaleidoscope patterns

around you accelerating and
brightening in gorgeous flashes

and the music of the spheres has finally
broken through the clouds

into your ears
as your

heart’s about to break
and death take you

and the procession of saints can be
glimpsed over the hill

for you to join at the end
to continue on

past this world’s din

Wooden Boy said...

I was given a stuffed scotty dog (the name of Bob) and as if by magic, my tonsils disappeared. My Mum being a nurse, she had the whole ward in on it.

Nin Andrews said...

Oh yeah. I had loads of operations as a kid. I still remember the time my dad said he was taking me shopping. I remember thinking the hospital gown was some kind of new dress. Boy was I gullible. I was maybe 4 years old. Next thing I knew, out cold.
Each operation, I was a little less docile. When I was 8, I was so terrified, I shoved a nurse across the room when she tried to place the mask over my mouth. Ether. That was such an awful drug. I feel as if I can still feel it in the back of my throat, taste it on my tongue . . .

vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Hear, hear--why does that baby look wise beyond its years?

TC said...

Wise baby for sure.

I still hope all goes well.

But you never know.

I have this little problem that makes these matters dicey. Easy enough to cut, but way too slow to knit. Should have been returned to factory.

But let's not go into all that.

Must keep this brief so it may pass as sent from my i-Phone. Everybody wants to belong.