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Thursday, January 03, 2008

From sondheim@panix.com Wed Jan 2 22:33:
Date: Wed, 2 Jan :33: (EST)
From: Alan Sondheim
To: Cyb , Wryting-L

Subject: Boojum




Boojum


Our cat, Boojum, had to be put to sleep today, in our arms, two days after
her 18th birthday. We were closer to her than most people. She meditated.
She taught patience. We're distraught; she was a good friend, a companion
who helped us through bleak times. She loved olives, asparagus, tomato
sauce. She was beginning to close down; her last purring was about ten
days ago. Losing a companion (Haraway's companion species) is as bad a
loss as any other (in spite of my father, who said, It's not like losing a
person you know). I can't do elegy after days of crying, running to emer-
gency rooms, trying different foods and medication. Below is her Internet
Index, within the crabbed space of my webpage.


her name, boojum, jean-paul, others
her name, boojum, jean-paul, others
her name, boojum, jean-paul, others
her name, boojum, jean-paul, others
name, boojum, jean-paul, others her name, boojum, jean-paul, others her
name, boojum, jean-paul, others her name, boojum, jean-paul, others hear
the despair among the carbon cacti, boojum trees, even in the midst of the
name, boojum, jean-paul, others her name, boojum, jean-paul, others her
name, boojum, jean-paul, others her name, boojum, jean-paul, others hear
the despair among the carbon cacti, boojum trees, even in the midst of the
Aditya A boggart bogle bonachus bonasus bonedevil bonnacon boobrie boojum
hear the despair among the carbon cacti, boojum trees, even in the midst
forgotten. Now, 2007, we are bringing our cat Boojum, this May 29, to Hope
2003 Boojum the cat who adopted me in 1990, developed breast cancer. She
The cat, Boojum, imagining her, the tenor of her fur, quality of her eyes,
:Boojum Carter
Comments by writer: Boojum is named after the Boojum tree in Baja
fury of cancer and creation. Azure and I are beside ourselves, and Boojum
Boojum, our cat, is checked now daily for a resurgence of cancer; we can't
cat, Boojum, imagining her, the tenor of her fur, quality of her eyes,
Boojum Carter Comments by writer: Boojum is named after the Boojum tree in
Boojum Boojum, our cat, is checked now daily for a resurgence of cancer;
cat, Boojum, imagining her, the tenor of her fur, quality of her eyes,
Boojum Carter Comments by writer: Boojum is named after the Boojum tree in
Boojum Boojum, our cat, is checked now daily for a resurgence of cancer;
partner, Azure Carter, and their cat, Boojum.


Boojum Carter (medical report four years ago)


feline, aged 13 1/2, four years after our mother's death, biopsy diagnosed
as follows:

Microscopic: MAMMARY MASS ONE - This mass is demarcated and has a well
localized appearance. It is comprised of a collection of neoplastic
epithelial cells that are forming tubules. The tubules are separated by
variably thick connective tissue septa. The neoplastic cells have ovoid
stippled nuclei and a scant amount of eosinophilic cytoplasm. Cytoplasmic
borders are distinct. The mitotic rate is low and ranges from 0-1 per
high-power field. Nonneoplastic tissue is forming margins. There are
scattered aggregates of lymphocytes and plasma cells surrounding the
growth MAMMARY MASS TWO - This is the larger of the growths evaluated.
There are several large cysts. There is a proliferating population of
neoplastic epithelial cells. The cells are organized in the lobules that
are forming occasional tubules. The central areas of the lobules are
degenerate. Neoplastic cells exhibit invasion. One or two layers of cells
line the tubules. The cells have large round vesicular nuclei with
multiple nucleoli. The cytoplasm is eosinophilic, scant and cytoplasmic
borders are distinct. The mitotic rate ranges up to six per high-power
field. Nonneoplastic tissue is forming margins.

DIAGNOSIS: MAMMARY MASS ONE- MAMMARY GLAD ADENOCARCINOMA, TUBULAR, LOW
GRADE MAMMARY MASS TWO - MAMMARY GLAND ADENOCARCINOMA, TUBULAR CYSTIC

PROGNOSIS: Guarded

COMMENTS: Feline mammary malignancies should be considered capable of
metastasis and warrant a guarded prognosis at best. The first smaller
growth evaluated is well localized and is not exhibiting invasion. This
appears to be a well-differentiated adenocarcinoma. The second growth is
exhibiting invasion and this growth should be considered as having
potential for metastasis. Lymphatic invasion is not identified with any of
the sections evaluated. These growths appear to be excised.

Comments by doctor: Guarded. Felines tend not to recover. She might live
six months, several years, or less. There is no way to tell. She needs
immune system fortification. The doctor wishes her news would have been
better. The question is whether or not the tubules remain within the body.
The cancer could spread rapidly or even go into remission.

Comments by writer: Boojum is named after the Boojum tree in Baja
California. She is thirteen and a half. She exhibits no signs of illness.
She has been my companion and is highly sociable and nervous, She has the
personality, if not the skills, of a brilliant writer. At the moment she
is sleeping, recovering from the removal of her stitches. She travelled
with us to Miami, where she encountered, even indoors, new and interesting
forms of flora and fauna. Azure and I pray that she will live forever.

Comments: That cancer is always the same, disordered, disorderly, a tough
go whose treatment is violent and invasive as well. The well-defined
structure of the body begins to collapse as tunnels are formed through
highly-organized tissue.

Every organism is a world of miracles, and every creature dissolves in the
fury of cancer and creation. Azure and I are beside ourselves, and Boojum
Carter dreams now, not of death.




From sondheim@panix.com Thu Jan 3 08:39:
Date: Thu, 3 Jan :39: (EST)
From: Alan Sondheim
To: arc.hive@anart.no
Subject: elegy for Boojum, our companion cat, we are all poor




elegy for Boojum, our companion cat, we are all poor,


'i can't do elegy' -
this is a poor and sleepless poem -
when something's at the limit there's nothing more to say -
for a moment i might have reversed the process
but heard nothing more than wailing or sounds like an animal -
nothing of crying, just tattered sound -
nothing of warning, fear, existence, trepidation -
nothing can be said on either side of death -
neither this one nor that one -
neither this nor the other -
death is an other -
(eighteen years, and death is an other) -
death is everywhere, death is not around -
(eighteen years, and death is everywhere,
death is poor, death is not around) -
always already other can't speak can't hear can't see -
double needles, of sedative, of anesthetic overdose -
doubled needles -
who are these people & their kindness -
(eighteen years and the kindness of strangers) -
i'm done with it, the other's never done with it -
always the last trip last day last night
last meal last touch last scent last sound -
(eighteen years and the last day and night,
last touch and meal, last scent and sound) -
in and out of the thick of it -
the thick of it never changed -
it stayed dry, viscous, substance and fissure -
it's uncomfortable, stains, sticks to everything -
lives on in us, exchanged, drops to the ground -
crawls out, walks to the sea, drops to the ground -
i can't drop to the ground, i drop to the ground -
there's an elegy on, everyone's there -
she says i think we're at the beginning of speech -
she says she's very sad and wants to go hone -
she stood dry, unattended -
(eighteen years and dry and unattended,
accompanied and unaccompanied, who can go
into and out of the world) -
the fire went out, into the world --
today someone counted elements,
earth, fire, water, wind, air, heat, dearth,
wood, & metal -
(eighteen years and the counting of elements) -
how was the air, the air was cold, bitter,
the wind harsh, we turned the carrier against
the wind, dearth of it all, harboring a flame
until the last, dying in our arms, the metal table,
off to a far wood of hunting -
the world is filled with secret coordinates -
impermanence of the metallic -
she says she thought of the limit -
in a small heaven somewhere -
& now we are silent in the night, existence is silent -
existence crawls, we heard her cries, the catheter
carefully inserted elsewhere in the building -
we held her heat against us, we exchanged heat -
the tablets - prayer wheel spinning above a slow flame -
we couldn't bear to empty her water, clean
her bowl of food, now despair reigns, & in our arms
nothing happened, everything seized --
'this is a poor and sleepless poem' -
without goodbyes, with ill-knowledge,
with infinite regret, with the world undone -
(eighteen years and the world undone) -
ah ah ah ah
ah ah ah ah
ah ah ah ah
ah ah ah ah

3 comments:

phaneronoemikon said...

i'm sorry alan..

Our Patchen is getting on up there too, we got her in 93 sometime, she adopted us as well. a wayward.

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Richard Taylor said...

Alan - a real, or virtual cat?

Either. My cat died in 2005 and I was pretty distraught.

Great writing on here as always Alan!

Richard

PS I "borrowed" some of your Bog (I acknowledged) and "talked", about what you are doing here, on my Blog ,EYELIGHT.

Richard