It was very hot outside. I was taking Eddie dog for his evening drag. Outside, a man was cleaning the driveway of our apartment building with a pressure hose, making the sticky day steamy too. I waited for him to spurt elsewhere and walked past with Eds.
As the outer gate clanged shut, I slipped on the wet pavement, and fell hard and headlong. As I went down, my ankle doubled under me. I knew it was bad.
There was no-one in sight. I grabbed Eds, who had wandered over to lick my face. I dragged myself upright by the gate handle. I staggered back up the drive, the ill-favoured cleaner staring, saying nothing. Safe indoors, pain and shock took over.
In quick succession then: cab to clinic, x-rays, broken ankle diagnosed, plaster, hospital bedroom, tubes and drips, baby food supper. And next day, pain, anaesthetic, surgery, vomiting. A second night then home.
I haven’t been outside the front door for a week now, or seen the sun, or walked on two feet. I wait for milestones – bandages came off yesterday; stitches out a week today, then a big biker-boot walker. After that I can go outside again, and marvel at all the things I was complaining about before the fall. People…shops…blue sky and clouds…same old woods with Eds…up and down the aisles at the supermarket. Choosing where I go and what I get.
Almost the first thing I did at the clinic was to contact my brother and sister in London, via Facebook, Facetime, Whassup. (I live abroad). Also my daughter-in-law and sister-in-law. Their concern and bracing kindness have been a lifeline since my world lurched. I scribbled this short poem in bed at the clinic:
After the fall
When I fell, I fell
alone and hard on the shuttered Spanish street.
Afterwards, in relation, I fell again and
again and this time,
my loved ones caught me.
On the Net, and in the air, they caught me and held me,
I started this blog to while away the captive days, and to reconnect with ‘the extraordinary ordinary’ of daily life, through writing. I hope you like some of the poems I am working on and welcome hearing your stories and comments too.
One thought on “The Fall”
I love the imagery in After The Fall, the idea of being caught and held is beautiful. The pain, both of the actual fall and the metaphorical, and the sadness of being far away from loved ones at such a time, seems to shadow-haunt the poem in the repetition of ‘in relation’. I’ve been left pondering the notion of ‘in relation’…such a dense, meaning-full notion.