October 17, 2012
And on the seventh day of chemo week he shaved his neck beard and felt that it was good.
October 24, 2012
If at any point in this journal I sounded as if some milestone or another made me feel like there would, in fact, be an end to all this yark, please forgive me for misleading you. It was only after this month’s chemo effects began to subside that I can honestly claim to have seen the tunnel’s end.
After the first month’s treatment, I could still see the light behind me if I cared to turn around; but it was no paradise’s light beyond the entrance—more like the sickly fluorescence of hospital wards—so forward into dimness was as good as the way over my shoulder.
From then on, each round bore me deeper into the mountain of this metaphor, deeper into the metaphor’s darkness. A darkness with dripping limestone plicking the slick, blind path ahead. In this metaphor there are bats named Legion about your ears—the whirruping of whose wings drive out any hope of cogent thought, any thought of hope. There are lurking slimerifousnesses mustering ambuscades to squelch whatever fleet comfort one derives from (to speak literally now) Tropical Smoothies.
If at the quarter-mark, taking the first turn, I led you to believe that I had gathered some momentum and could stride apace, knees never buckling, until I broke the wimpy crepe-streamer at the finish line, forgive me. Wrong metaphor.
If in July I seemed to be saying that I had crowned the summit, could descry my destination in the verdant valley below, and had only to begin my descent, vertiginous though it may be, precarious with leafy pitfalls, jagged with jags and thorny with thorns, but visible and beckoning nonetheless, forgive me. Wrong metaphor.
If even just last month, I claimed to have rounded third and to be sprinting toward home-plate, reaching full speed, ready for the rapidly nearing collision with the armored hind-catcher, ecstatic in the notion of a walk-off score, of a locker-room champagne shower and a morning show’s people already in touch with my people . . . wrong metaphor. All apologies.
But now, there is a twinkling. A lone pulsar like a pinprick in the black night funneling grains of daylight.
Ten months of purported progress, of going forward for fear of going back, back to the sickly fluorescence of hospital wards--but now, there is a twinkling at the end of this metaphor, the proverbial light—in a manner of speaking, figuratively, that is, my journey in opacity, of bat-attacks and chilling limestone drips, is approaching the point of return.
I can see it. Honestly.