June 22nd, 2008

little review

Poem for Sunday

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Hello from New Jersey, where we are staying overnight after an afternoon in Brooklyn, visiting my uncle who is very much improved -- thanks so much for all the good wishes. Traffic to New York was no fun but it wasn't so bad in New York, particularly once we got over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge and drove up Ocean Parkway -- always a nostalgic experience for me, since it reminds me of visiting my grandparents in Brooklyn as a child; I still have trouble looking at the hole in the Manhattan skyline. My uncle is in a hospital in a largely Orthodox Jewish neighborhood where girls in black skirts and men in black hats were sitting on porches and parks waiting for the latest Havdalah of the year; there were bagel places open as we left Brooklyn that had been closed when we arrived.

My parents were at the hospital and hung out with our kids, who weren't allowed in the ICU, while we went to see my uncle in gowns, gloves and masks. He'd been unconscious most of the day before, but although he was very weak, he was perfectly comprehensible and in surprisingly good spirits, so I am really glad we came to see him -- we'll go back in the morning. After we talked to him for a while, we went for a ride with my parents past the house in Flatbush where my mother grew up, then out to dinner at the El Greco diner in Sheepshead Bay right on the water, with fishing boats returning and dinner boats just leaving. It was a beautiful cool evening and we walked a bit along the water after the meal.

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