Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Six-Hundred Dollar Pill


All those times I was bored
out of my mind. Holding the log
while he sawed it. Holding
the string while he measured, boards,
distances between things, or pounded
stakes into the ground for rows and rows
of lettuces and beets, which I then (bored)
weeded. Or sat in the back
of the car, or sat still in boats,
sat, sat, while at the prow, stern, wheel
he drove, steered, paddled. It
wasn't even boredom, it was looking,
looking hard and up close at the small
details. Myopia. The worn gunwales,
the intricate twill of the seat
cover. The acid crumbs of loam, the granular
pink rock, its igneous veins, the sea-fans
of dry moss, the blackish and then the graying
bristles on the back of his neck.
Sometimes he would whistle, sometimes
I would. The boring rhythm of doing
things over and over, carrying
the wood, drying
the dishes. Such minutiae. It's what
the animals spend most of their time at,
ferrying the sand, grain by grain, from their tunnels,
shuffling the leaves in their burrows. He pointed
such things out, and I would look
at the whorled texture of his square finger, earth under
the nail. Why do I remember it as sunnier
all the time then, although it more often
rained, and more birdsong?
I could hardly wait to get
the hell out of there to
anywhere else. Perhaps though
boredom is happier. It is for dogs or
groundhogs. Now I wouldn't be bored.
Now I would know too much.
Now I would know.


  1. The Atwood piece is convincing Goatman.

    To your health and the VA gettin' you the chemicals you need.

  2. I never get bored and I don't think I ever have.

    Atwood's words prove she was never bored, if she had been she wouldn't have absorbed as much as she did when with her father.

    My best wishes and thoughts go out to you...and I hope that little pill does what it's supposed to do...and I hope the VA does, too. Onwards and upwards, are stronger than your foe. :)

  3. The older I get, the more there seems to be to know about.

    Truer words have never been spoken. What bugs me though is having to listen to people with such stunted a stunted, narrow, and small view of life and the universe.

  4. Thank you for your visit to my place. Love the Atwood poem.
    And yes, I too was bored/ignorant while at school. Now, I am realising how much I have to learn. No time to be bored.
    I hope that little pill does its job. With minimal side effects.

  5. I send my best thoughts to you for good health and many good days ahead.

    Wonderful poem by Margaret Atwood.

  6. I hope your feeling better and these meds you wrote of are helping kill those nasty cancer cells.

    I've never been bored. And I agree with you. I have always felt that boredom is a lack of imagination. Or an inability to "go within" with oneself. Maybe always needing an "external life" but never becoming "one" with ones "internal self"? It's only the outer world many may seek. But when they come home and are alone with themselves, what have they got but "self"? Some may have never gotten in touch with themselves their whole lives. Sad really.



  7. It is odd that the only reason the pill is so expensive (was reading this about the Hep C pill) is because other nations regulate the pricing of pharmaceuticals. America does not, so we get to pay for all the R&D and the majority of profit.

    So for future reference for myself, what was VA's answer?

  8. VA paid all for the $13,000 bottle of 21 pills which is why I registered with them. If I had gotten those through my Part D Medicare drug policy (through my private ocologist)
    I would have had to pay about half of that.
    I heard or read somewhere that VA can and does negotiate pricing with the drug companies because of VA's large demand for pills.

  9. Every hurdle is learning phaze ... Sometime Im working and Im not so inspired to keep working.. boredom is here in very little things ... Love the way you talk about it .. My est wished to you .. take care of yourself and keep fighting

  10. I have learned to make use of blog talk radio during my many hours of working outside. It stimulates the mind and make me feel like I haven't spent hours in boring work. Sending healing thoughts and prayers that new beginnings can be found.

  11. May they discover a cure for all the diseases even boredom.