Saturday, August 3, 2013


I have hesitated to announce it. I wanted to adjust a bit and perhaps be told there was some possible turn around or skill or technique or drug. They tell me I have to wait six months but that mainly the chances are my condition in my left eye is permanent. I have been injected now twice through the white of my eyeball but that drug is to inhibit the confused capillary response to my condition. It does nothing to cure my eye, just helps it not get worse. There is no surgical fix possible without a considerable natural healing that is remotely possible but not likely at this point.

I walked out of a local church basement at 6:40 PM four Fridays ago. I noticed something wrong with my left eye that was not wrong in the basement. So that's when it happened. I had a bleed, called a subretinal hemorrhage, and it has over a couple weeks effectively taken all my sight in that eye. It did not and does not hurt. I wear a patch most days now because my eye tries to see past the blotch and clarify the jungle in the golden light that is left to me, see past it to the real world. I have retinal flashes that draw me to that eye too, flashes of white. I think I am seeing ghosts. I place pressure on my eye by rubbing it and produce pinpricks of intense blue light in the blackness. So far I am not too seriously handicapped but I am a bit nervous about what could happen to my right eye.

I was at the higher end of the normal range of Coumadin levels. I have taken Coumadin for three years because my stroke risk is so high. I have had two minor heart events and a minor pulmonary embolism and atrial fibrillation is constantly with me. So is insufficient flexibility in my heart's intake relax stroke, the one that fills it with blood to pump. I do not pump a full chamber of blood any more. Low volume in my blood flow comes from these two directions and both lead to higher risk of clotting. This is called diastolic heart failure and it is a close relation to congestive heart failure. The docs did not duck and weave nor did they waffle. It is certainly the Coumadin caused this in me. Now my allowed Coumadin blood level is much tighter with the upper end lowered half way to the lower end of the level. This is much harder to maintain. Weekly blood tests are required of me.

My conundrum: do I halt the Coumadin, accept the risk of stroke and perhaps save my sight? Do I keep the Coumadin, possibly saving me from stroke, but risk losing my sight? The doctor says straight up, "I don't know." Neither do I but I am less afraid of blindness, oddly enough, than I am of a debilitating stroke that does not kill me.


The Evening Star
has stolen my sanity
once again, matter
beyond fact but not
smoke, never smoke in all this

are not looking for
their herds, nor are dogs any
help at the moment.
Lord, I am trying
to settle down, I promise
and hope to die, stick
a needle in my

I wear the pirate patch
but not that well, Love.
My Evening Star,
you've pierced me. Now I'm half blind,
but you are still near.

‎August 3, ‎2013 3:21 PM

Hesperus, The Evening Star, Ed Burne-Jones, completed 1870
Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, 1st Baronet, A.R.A. (28 August 1833 – 17 June 1898) was a British artist and designer.


  1. What an awful dilemma to have to face. My heart goes out to you Christopher. Yet I perceive great strength and courage in you, and that must stand you in good stead. Our thoughts are with friend.

    1. Thank you for your kindness. I am actually laying this decision out for others to ponder basically having made it for myself. As I wrote, I am coming down on the side of risking my blindness and protecting against stroke.

      I think it important however that we remind each other to deconstruct illusions as best we can. We are powerless to prevent conundrums such as this one. Sometimes it gets really personal as it has with me.

      As for me, I thought, "what about my blog and my poetry?" Then I thought, "at least I would still be able to make music blind, but I could make neither poetry nor music if the stroke were severe enough." That was sufficient to the choice.

  2. I haven't been here for so long, so it is with sadness that I read this. I so hate for you the fear the awfulness of the choice.

  3. christopher, i think you make the choice i would make but to have to make the choice -

    these bodies. oh, these bodies.)))))))


    1. Yes, the choice it seems to me is clear but I may regret it.


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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