Living Obliquely

Approximately 1400 people are diagnosed with Transverse Myelitis (TM) annually.
Similar to Multiple Sclerosis, it attacks your myelin, leading to painful and debilitating side effects.
About 33,000 Americans are currently disabled as a result of this rare neurological disorder.
Not one person with TM will ever know their prognosis.
I happen to be one of them.

I am a neurological soup. Since my TM diagnosis, I have developed encephalitis, MS, RSD/CRPS, Osteoporosis (I am 34, no 35, eek), and Chronic Anemia. sucks, but I still rock.


Even on the Worst Neuro Days, Mom Matters Most...

of the time. Just kidding, but capably
you're my canopy. Even when capriciousness drives
us to polar sides of PA, just because
that's where we live.

You try to convince me
come back home but
that's your present and my past

tense = tension, a trivial life

of tapping
twiddling already
twitching fingers
centrifugal clonus - not a body

on the go, and I'm corny
and cliched with gratitude, awe
for your less than 24-hour
cleaning skills

when the clutter/chaos/call-to-duty
my two homes:

compound into a constant
cat hair

coats coating
once upon-a-time cream-colored carpet
as endless

winter winds that collapse
this caned lady
swishing ear to ear

What's the big deal with vertical?

circular red pills
oval pink capsules
oxy oxy oxy
cotin codone


in my swallow, soundless. So you fly
to me, under the wire,
and that's and those are the same

wire(s) that wrap my recalcitrant
neuro body in conflict,
clinical trials,
insurance corruption;

CRPS (look it up, lazy, then thank your unhindered cognition)
trippy daily treatments;
convulsions; cramps, cricks, & caustic
integument cracking -

an egg on steroids
as my corpus
out of itself;

curse the contiguous
moments of cureless
unconscious health


cause constitution collapse (on the couch
or less corporeal iterations); and ceaseless alliteration

'cause I'm cool and crafty like that
even tho I'm too conked

copious (nar)cotics
constructively commonsensical
(yet uncovered)
Thank you

mom, it's mother's day, one day
past yet another day we call a ride.

Once upon a time, you don't mind roller-coasters

except for this
a crockpotted neuro-concoction
that keeps
on keeping on
crumbling a life that we (altho probably differently) conceived.

Cheers mom.
Prost mom.
Grandma, thank you for calling.
Cheers mom.
Genatzt mom.
Salud, Sláinte, L'chaim!

We both like vodka.
I'm happy we both like vodka
at noon
at night
as closeted contraband
in home/hospital


Mud in your eye, but you're soft
Mud in my eye, because I'm numb
and ossified. Mud in
muddied, vacant, blurred,
blind, breathless, buried

eyes. Aye, aye! It's always as true
as volcanoes in Indonesia,
bottoms up
bottom's up
bottom's up
bottom's up

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If you're a Philly-region person with TM, please consider joining the Transverse Myelitis Philadelphia network (, a new social networking group that I started for people with TM so that we can meet and chat casually. It's only on Facebook for now, so, if you haven't already, join. It's easy.


In Pictures

Please Note: Some photos may contain partial nudity or depictions of medical procedures. Though I am in many of these photos, my reason for sharing these personal photos is to promote awareness, understanding, and advocacy for people with TM and other rare diseases.
To play the slide show, click the big play button in the center of the screen, then the small one in the bottom left corner. Click here for more advanced viewing instructions, and select "Help."

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