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Barton Springs

Hoagland, Tony

doi: 10.1097/01.COT.0000288340.83800.a6

Oh life, how I loved your cold spring mornings of putting my stuff in the green gym-bag and crossing wet grass to the southeast gate to push my crumpled dollar through the slot.

When I get my allotted case of cancer, let me swim ten more times at Barton Springs, in the outdoor pool at 6 am, in the cold water with the geezers and jocks.

With my head bald from radiation and my chemotherapeutic weight loss I will be sleek as a cheetah —and I will not complain about life's pedestrian hypocrisies, I will not consider death a contractual violation. Let my cancer be the slow-growing kind so I will have all the time I need to backstroke over the rocks and little fishes, looking upward through my bronze-tinted goggles into the vaults and rafters of the oaks, as the crows exchange their morning gossip in the pale mutations of early light. It was worth death to see you through these optic nerves, to feel breeze through the fur on my arms to be chilled and stirred in your mortal martini.

In documents elsewhere I have already recorded my complaints in some painstaking detail. Now, because all things are joyful near water, There just might be time to catch up on praise.

© 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
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