Dogs 2007

86'D
(1/13/07)


the clinic doctor
looked
down
at me
on the table
shook his head
and said

"no more for you"

I had walked
into the plasma center
30 minutes earlier
the usual
twice a week stop
to supplement
my meager
resources

pockets loaded
and extra clothing
on this hot summer day
to ensure
that I'd qualify
for the over
150 pound bonus
(more for them
more for us)
but at 145
stripped
six foot
skinny
it was always
a difficult weight
for me to
attain

I felt
like a boxer
or wrestler
making those
last minute adjustments
to be legit
for their class

everything
had been routine
up to the time
that I stretched out
and one of the new techs
made an attempt
for a vein
once
twice
three times
she stuck me
until finally
giving up
and calling
for her supervisor

that woman
quickly found
the optimum source
and I was hooked
and draining
but wasn't at
my typical
calm and relaxed
best

deposit made
she bandaged my arm
with adhesive tape
and cotton ball
pointed me
to the checkout counter
where I scored $25
then proceeded
to the exit

a few feet
short of the door
I started feeling faint
so sat down
in the waiting area
the sun
streaming in
brightly
glistening
on my pale
sweaty skin

I caught the eye
of the desk manager
just as he began
to tunnel away from me
in a quickly diminishing
circle of
light

I came to
with
the doctor
shift super
and assorted techs
gathered about me
they checked my vitals
then pronouncement
was made
I was forever barred
from the facility
told to take
my money
and go

I had been
tossed out of
bars and nightclubs
in probably 36
of the 50 states
one province
and Australia
but this
was a new
low

I staggered out
into the bright day
and shuffled along
hoping to make
the 3 blocks
to my roach hotel
of a room
before dropping
again

at least
I had
some beer
money