Emmy, and the news of the day

Facebook, that endless repository of trash and treasure, yesterday yielded reference to a delicious new book of photographs of senior dogs. I was already thinking about my own aging as I read the whimsical-graphic-novel about Alzheimer’s (how often do you see those five words strung together?)--and I was moved by those old dogs, so softened, slowed, and polished by age. So when I went out for an evening walk tonight and came upon my neighbor Emmy and her person, I naturally asked for a photograph, and Emmy was glad to oblige.

It was a day of good news and bad news. I was having a raging migraine when I saw the EENT doctor, and he said first of all that the sinus infection is not IN my brain. That was a misunderstanding. It’s nestled right up against the brain, but not in it. So that’s good news. Then he said let’s try two weeks of a strong antibiotic, and then a CAT Scan. If the antibiotic clears out the sinusitis, we’re home free. If it doesn’t, he has other tricks up his sleeve. Because I’ve had migraines since I was a teenager, he doesn’t expect this to cure them; but it will cure the ones I’ve been having lately, which we think are being triggered by the packed ethmoid sinus behind that deviated septum. 

Deviated septum? That was the diagnosis all the aspiring actresses wanted in the 1960s, so they could get Audrey Hepburn nose jobs covered by their parents’ insurance. I guess I could have had a designer nose. Now it's too damn late, and it's the neck wattle I'd love to get rid of, though if I had that kind of money I wouldn't spend it on plastic surgery anyway.

The bad news came from Lesotho. My daughter Angel learned of the death of her nephew. He was two years older than Angel, being the child of a much-older sister, and they were very close as children growing up together. It is hard, when you have changed worlds and cultures, to imagine the death of someone who was part of your life in what feels like another incarnation. Hard to hold it, hard to take it in. I hold her in my heart with her grief.

Here is my favorite dog poem. I think I have blipped this poem before, maybe more than once, but good poems, like good friends, deserve visiting again and again, and the poem sort of ties together all I've been thinking about today.

I Ask Percy How I Should Live My Life
by Mary Oliver

Love, love, love, says Percy.
And hurry as fast as you can
along the shining beach, or the rubble, or the dust.

Then, go to sleep.
Give up your body heat, your beating heart.
Then, trust.

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