wounded warriors/october light

My father has not stopped talking since he fell.
It's half anxiety, and half morphine, and another half (there are always a few worlds involved in any accident) is from that impulse to talk ourselves into being when we are not so sure where we ourselves are.
It's a mistake to think that silence means you don't think about it any more, but I'm in a place where I need words, even if they are half felt.
There are the four firemen, horsemen coming to announce this isn't an apocalypse, but the business of bloody bones, and a fight between the living and the dead.  Nothing resolutely shaking the foundations, but they do bring up old bones that are uncomfortable to live with in a hospital room.
There is the admitting nurse, who was asking him about suicidal thoughts when she shut the door on me, before asking him if I had caused the wounds on his face and arms and legs.  There are lots of old wounds on that old man's body, and it'll take x-ray vision to separate the fresh ones from the old ones.
There are the two young nurses, flirting and talking about steampunk alice in wonderland, getting a vicarious fix from watching him react to the first hits of morphine.  I like to watch, too, but it gets to be a little too heavy when his eyes start to flutter, and his blinking takes him back and forth between the here and the not here.
There are the two x-ray technicians we waited for, and then I hunted for, hiding in a room watching videos on their laptop.  Guardians between the gates of the living and the dead, with no power to heal, only power to see.  Blessed holy seeing power.
And then there is the night nurse, rolling asperging eyes, insisting on a chair, my mother broke her shoulder, and he needs a chair, and I didn't trust her rolling eyes, but not enough to sleep in a ball next to my father's twitching body, and the dance of his twitching feet that lasted until the sun came up.
And then there is the blonde angel, a ridiculous and trite archetype, an envelope of truth hidden in her pocket, and more morphine for the bones that continue to talk, and keep his teeth moving in his jaw even though his throat is too dry to hear the stories about dancing girls and stolen cars, and a thousand taverns in south milwaukee.
And then there is my daughter, come to the room to make things light, lighting up the face of an 88 year old man who accidentally forgets where phoenix is.
These wounded warriors are sharp, their tongues and minds are sharp and exploding.
I remember when my daughter used to pull her arm out of her socket playing, and the visits to the medical places where she screamed one moment and sighed the next, and I remember thinking that I can't imagine anything worse than seeing your own flesh and blood in pain.  Old blood, young blood, it's all part of the bloody business of bones, and I'm walking into the next season that refused to yield for 100 endless nights, this was not my decision.
And then there is the te amo cigar, a cigar named revolucion, this is an old place, and there are old ideas thumping in my veins, somewhere between compassion and grief, there are old ideas pounding in my veins.  


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