Friday, September 30, 2016

Kit Kelen #274 - vestibular neuritis

vestibular neuritis / labarynthitis

first time in the ambulance
you might not notice much of your surroundings
the boys even put the siren on
for fun … or why does a dog lick its balls?

but the thing is time is different in there
every bump like a big swell in a little boat
you try to row but there's nowhere to go

at least
no gunshot wound
not heart gave up
no sudden onset gangrene

really – I am so fucking lucky
and to fall over
just a wheelchair ride from the clinic
truly a charmed life!

still and all
my sight is sorry
my head explodes
as it spins
as I stay as still
as life allows 

by golly
those crickets have volume today 

between the brain and the inner ear
something has snapped like a guitar string
perhaps I was tuned too high?
or the weather brought it on?

I have been here before
and it was worse the other time
days till I could make things still

now closed eyes hypnagogic
visions one must not waste
when the head is still
the world is

a terrible thing
so tuned to the sphere
that the spin gets in

move your head
and the world goes round
butnot the way you'd want

it's a fault in the wiring
the doctors keep shining
bright lights into it
that only makes it worse

I should explain abut the dizziness
but I don't want you to have to understand
let's just say
but you look like a drunk
but you're having a lot less fun
you can't hold food down

everyone takes some kind of balance for granted
… imagine the rug pulled out from under your feet
continuously, maybe for a week, even when you sleep
imagine the struggle to sit up, to stand

so like a bad dream
but you have to dream on

I spent a lot of time
worrying this could come back
and now it's back
I'm still worrying
watching, waiting
for the signs

it's funny how worry habituates
you'd think the coming of the trauma
would let worry off the hook
no such luck

in such times the duty to observe
is the best blessing
that's why we're here now

I cannot see what I write
but I will read it later

come amanuensis
take this down

dear friends
if I am not answering your messages
as quickly as I usually would
it's because I cannot look at a screen
or not for long

the cosmos is a telling thing
aren't we always being told

for instance now
I'm told to focus
to keep my eyes on a single object
and mainly
to keep them closed

find a single point in the blank
stare out the wall
dare the world still
and breathe
hear the birds again


  1. Ouch. Hope your recovery proceeds quickly and smoothly, Kit. I looked up vestibular neuritis, which you know too well but I didn't, as: "a disorder that results in inflammation of the inner ear and/or the nerve connecting the inner ear to the brain. Generally caused by a viral infection, these conditions cause vertigo ..."

  2. a very unpleasant condition has at least given rise to a damn good poem! hope you have a speedy recovery, Kit

  3. I hope it passes rapidly, Kit. I commiserate. I have been hospitalised with this too, and at this time of year too. I've never completely recovered my balance (though yoga and Vit D, and a few other things helped me tremendously ). A terrifying experience. I was clinging to the floor for dear life vomiting constantly while the earth's spin tried to throw me off.

  4. Yes. Horrible. Speedy recovery, mate.

  5. thanks for your support all --really appreciated

    amazes me how cavalier the quacks are with it ... and it also amazes me how many people I know have had it it turns out in Efi ... so I wonder if this something for poets and artists?

    what really shits me is it's seven and a half years since the major episode and I really was at least five years gradually recovering balance ... so I hope I'm not back to square one

    good news is that I'm typing now after 30 hours ... last time it took me about week to get to be able to type...
    spinning is already much less now

    again thanks
    and love to you all

  6. oh boy! hope it passes quickly

  7. Yes they bring you down those things, but the writing that comes through it seems to zing with energy. Get well, we need you, pure selfishly.

  8. A terrific poem! Love these lines among others: something has snapped like a guitar string/perhaps I was tuned too high?
    Yes I've had the clinging to the floor vomity thing too - years ago - commiserations and speedy recovery.

  9. It doesn't sound good from the poem. The doctor's advice makes sense. Don't exhaust your eyes, and take the doctor's advice. I believe you'll recover a few days later. Remember to take some rest!Good luck to you, Professor Kelen!


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