Dieing to try….

Paula Keezer

March 4, 2004



"Get out!" shouted the old man as he tried to throw his glasses at Megan.  The feeble toss landed the glasses on the floor and one lens popped out.  Megan crossed the tiny room to where the old man was laying sideways with one leg hanging limply out between the safety sidebars. 


"Now Mr. Dakon, its time to get up and have some breakfast."


The effort of swinging his arm nearly made him pass out.  He lay crumpled on the hospital bed.  "Where am I?" he demanded.  "Who are you?” 


"I'm Megan.  I was here yesterday morning.  We had breakfast together.  You are home.  Don't you remember?"  Megan was calm and patient.


"Get out, leave me alone.” the old man said.  Drewl slowly dripped from the corner of his mouth and rolled across his face and finally hit the pillow.  An acrid smell rose from somewhere in his bed.


"No, no, its time to get up!"  Megan slowly untangled the old man's leg from the bars and rolled the old man's body onto his back, his arm flopping over onto the side of the bed.  Megan sat the old man upright, slipping his legs over the edge of the bed and supporting his back.  The old man's head drooped onto his chest but remained upright with a feeble effort from his body.  A brown stain could be seen on the bedclothes designed for such things.


"Leave me alone, I don't want to get up" the old man slurred, drewl now dripping off of his chin.


"We have to get you into the chair Mr. Dakon.  So we can go to the bathroom" 


The old man stared blankly, lost in barely a thought. 

His thought. 

His ship of angels transporting him back. 

 It was Christmas Eve and...


    Mr. Dakon shuffled over to the bar in his family room and poured his first drink of the night.  "This is it" he said to himself, alone.  "Everyone is gone and it’s just me.  I can barely walk and barely talk.  Its time to go."  He poured his whiskey into his shot glass, spilling almost as much on the bar top.  With shaky hands he raised the shot glass to his lips.  "here's to money" he said to himself.  The whiskey slowly burning its way down his throat.  'ahhh, time to go'.  He shuffled slowly out of the family room and over to the stairs.  Grabbing one banister with both hands he slowly pulled himself up the stairs, struggling to lift each leg onto each step. His weak legs barely able to support his shrivled body.  On the top step he stopped and looked around.  Down the hall to the front door, then at the giant TV next to the old fireplace, across the room to the old couch.  He stood up as straight as his feeble body would let him. "Its time to go" and Mr. Dakon leaned back letting go of the banister falling back first, then head first down the stairs.


The ship of angels transported him to the present where Megen was lifting him into the chair. 


"Lets go Mr. Dakon, first one leg, then the other, there we are.  Okay I'm going to swivel you around and set you in the chair." 

The old man slumped in the wheel chair, not able to support his own body anymore.  Megan rolled him out the bedroom door into the hallway.  There was the front door to his right.  Megan turned the wheel chair left and pushed the chair down the hall into the living room with the big TV and fireplace, then right towards the bathroom.  The old man's one good eye, misty, his face limp and resigned. 


The blank stare returned.

His thought. 

His ship of angels taking him back once again, 

this time it was his Birthday...


"No, No get out, I don't want any."  Andrew left with the tray, the food and water un-touched for the third day of meals. Andrew spoke quietly with Blake.  Soon a siren could be heard and gurney was rolled into the hall.

"What are you doing? Where are you taking me?" the old man cried. 

"We're going to the hospital to have a checkup" Blake said.

"no no, leave me alone, I want to stay here, this is my house, get out"  the old man said.

"We have to go and see why your having trouble eating and drinking."  Blake said. 

"I don’t want anything, leave me alone."  The old man said.  The old man tried to resist the emt's but they were used to people resisting and the old man was to weak to be much of a problem.  They strapped him into the gurney and took him to the hospital. 


The ship of angels transported him back to the present once again. 


"I'm going to lean you over the walker Mr. Dakon” The walker had a padded front so Mr Dakon could be draped over the walker while Megan changed Mr Dakon's pants and diapers and cleaned him as best as she could. 


"Why can't you people just leave me alone, I don't care.  I don't want to be washed."


"I’m going to sit you on the toilet Mr. Dakon.  I'll get you today's paper so you can read."  Megan sat Mr. Dakon on the high toilet seat with chair handles. The seat was located above the actual toilet.  The chair handles and back helped keep the slumping Mr. Dakon from falling off.


"Here you go Mr. Dakon,  today's paper."  Megan positioned the paper in the old man's hands and the old man's eye slowly scanned the front page. His eyelid slowly closed and he fell asleep, the paper slipping out of his hands on to the floor.  The ship of angels just out of reach.