Monday, June 2, 2008


a pain in the waist near the ribcage for about a month reluctant to see any doctor remembering always Voltaire who said that doctors entertain the patient while the body heals itself

here I go to see my doctor who is a tiny birdlike lady I haven’t seen in two years when I arrive find a great stone table has been set up in front of her house for summer picnics with her family and that her husband is carrying buckets of earth to spread around the new stone basin they have made for fishes and water lilies

I wait awhile having rung the bell twice before entering I cannot bear waiting rooms so I wait outside noticing she has changed the feng shui of the room I tell her it is much improved

where does it hurt exactly what are the symptoms she wants to know I point to the place at my waistline and the area just above the ribcage she asks me to lie on the chaiselongue and like a tiny sparrow gently puts her usual nine needles in my feet hands chest waist and the last one on the top of my head

and then she covers me with a quilt I lie there dozing entering the river of the Chinese painting on the wall swimming away endlessly for about half an hour until I hear mouse rustlings is she arranging papers or pecking seeds I open my eyes a little she removes the needles one has fallen off and I slowly rise

take lots of cranberry juice she tells me and drink lots of water we talk about her family her son used to work in my garden she has six little grandchildren sometime she will tell me all the things not to do when building a water basin do I exercise yes I practise tai chi

poplar leaves
heart shaped
float on water
eroded by seasons
into veined skeletons

by Giselle Maya
Saint Martin de Castillon, Provence, France

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