Sunday, January 17, 2010


by Hugh Fox

Twenty years (at least) since he’d married Sarah (Thailand),
who was in med school with him at the University of Chicago,
and he’d gone back with her to Thailand, four orientalized Irisher
kids (three girls, one guy), and he’d gotten way inside the sa, wa,
yin, dee, sa wat language, although 90% of the time his fellow
M.D.’s made a point of speaking English with him, very happy
with the sea food and curry and Kaeng phet ped yang, duck and
red curry no less, her father and mother and brothers and.....then
one day, a letter from Chicago: “Kevin, they say I’ve got maybe,
at most, another 30 days to live, thinking about you full-time,
don’t know if you can...,” just dots, the handwriting
flimsily faltering, I DON’T KNOW IF YOU CAN, yeah,
man, I CAN-CAN-CAN.....horrible flight, Jack’s wife, Elsie,
picking him up at the airport, “Maybe we should
go out to the house first, you must be...,”“Nah, I slept
on the plane,let’s go see him...,” U. of Chicago hospital,
impressive place, into his (private) room, looked like
a corpse already, but “I know I’m only your a cousin,
and it’s been years, but...,” “I feel the same way about
you...and [looking loveingly at Elsie] Jill too...,” “All the
Christmases we had together, Easters, you know...,”
“The only brother I ever had was you...,” sitting down next
to the bed...,” jacking up their spirits, thinking “Jack in
the forever box...,” wiping that vigorously away and forcing
himself into the however-long-it-lasted, shared NOW.

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