Specimen Times: Your Own Essay. By Robert Massa


Specimen Times: Your Own Essay. By Robert Massa

Plus: ‘A Diary of coping with AIDS’ and ‘Remembering Robert — Seven Writers Commemorate a Colleague and Friend’

Specimen times: Scenes Through the Epidemic 22, 1994 february

We DON’T UNDERSTAND where you can get as the doctor’s is left by me workplace. The stores and folks appear two-dimensional. Noises are muffled. We keep thinking: look closely at that which you feel. But all personally i think could be the wind.

I recall the museum is near by. The hefty woodwork, the leaded windows, the cavernous spaces remind me personally of elementary college. I go up the staircase that is central following a course where in fact the rock was worn down by footsteps.

I’m impressed as constantly by the dinosaur bones. These are generally exhibited for action — about to fight, planning to feed.

A trip guide breaks my ideas. She informs number of schoolchildren to ignore the indications when you look at the cup situations; normal history is advancing therefore quickly, she describes that the curator can’t carry on with, and some for the info is away from date.

I’m disappointed to consider which our technology will some­day seem quaint and that I’ll can’t say for sure exactly exactly what really took place towards the dinosaurs.


WE ENTER a glassed-in sidewalk cafe near Du­pont Circle. We make it point out sit across from Daniel because I would like to flirt without having the others noticing. We speak about the way the other countries in the world appears so aware that is little of our company is going right on through and exactly how much the neighborhood changed. We purchase omelettes; we browse around and understand it’s lunchtime when it comes to some other clients.

Daniel happens to be traveling within the Midwest and states he’s impressed by just exactly how close knit homosexual individuals appear in tiny towns; he’d trade a few of the freedom we now have in nyc for that feeling of community. We begin to have fun with the game, staring a little a long time, jerking our attention away. He apologizes for making use of Sweet ’n minimal, and I also confess I prefer too much salt. We look over the glass and state Washington could be a place that is nice in the end.

I quickly knock my fork on the ground and bend right down to select it, but I’m perhaps perhaps not watching and I also slam my forehead regarding the next dining table. It’s quiet around us. I research to say, “I’m fine, ” but before I have the words away We see two falls of my bloodstream, scarlet from the white linen.

We DRIVE towards the suburbs to go to my dad into the hospital. My hometown seems too manicured, like those model towns we utilized to create for the train set. My father’s space is in a unique wing for the medical center, with fall ceilings, sheetrock walls, and a crucifix that is small every home.

My brother and mother are there any. We inform them Dad looks good and my mom smiles. We commence to resent the interest he’s getting.

Later on, i will be alone with my dad as he wakes up. We’ve tiny talk. Instantly, he asks if individuals nevertheless get AIDS from transfusions. I’m startled simply to hear him state the term. I do want to simply tell him i realize just just how afraid and alone he seems, but I’m perhaps perhaps perhaps not ready for him to understand about me personally. We simply tell him to perhaps not worry — they screen bloodstream now. He does not look convinced, but places their mind right back and drifts down to rest. We touch their hand and notice how much our hands are alike.

A couple of https://www.camsloveaholics.com/female weeks later he’s back home and we see him once more. He seems hunched and small over, nevertheless the quickness has returned in the eyes. He provides me personally a vital up to a safe­ deposit package; his might plus some cost cost savings bonds are inside. If such a thing occurs to him, it’s as much as us to manage the plans. I’m the just one who could be relaxed adequate to know very well what doing.


We ADHERE PETER out to your coastline. Kids through the village play down within the distance. The sunlight has already been strong. Peter sits during the water’s edge and reduces his mind. We sit a feet that are few, wondering things to say. It had been easier straight straight back into the town; right here there was time that is too much think. We look straight right back during the visitor household and notice once more exactly just how shabby it is gotten.

We touch their neck. He does not would you like to perish alone. He does not like to perish. He is told by me i realize, I’m going right through it too. That does not soothe him. He begins once more, telling me just how their buddy died. We turn away.

Further along the coastline, some body has sculpted a full life­ size individual into the sand. The hands are crossed throughout the upper body such as human body in a casket. The facial skin is calm. We begin to inform Peter We heard these sculptures are included in a classic people faith nevertheless practiced from the area, but halfway through, We can’t keep in mind if that’s true or We imagined it.

Abruptly, we envy their hysteria. We simply tell him that the frightened child inside of him may be the component I adore most and if he got sick that I would be there. He calms down. We choose to opt for a swim. The water’s too cool while the tide’s to arrive, but we allow it to be past where in actuality the waves are breaking and immerse under the sun while the sodium as well as the movement. As soon as we return to secure, the sand corpse happens to be washed away.

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