Sunday, July 23, 2006

Trinidad Sanchez, Jr. Update - Trino Suffers Massive Stroke In S.A.

I just found this account on a blog, concerning beloved poet, Trinidad Sanchez, Jr.

Poet, Trinidad Sanchez, Jr.

So when I heard Regina's message yesterday after I got home from work it did not sound hopeful & I cried & called all my friends cause I decided that I had to go down there & see Trino if I didn't when he was so close & I never even got to say goodbye at least I would be mad at myself for a long time maybe forever.

Mr. Andy B. came through & for that I am immensely grateful. He gave me his car & after a hamburger I was on my way through the southbound traffic from Austin on a hot Thursday afternoon. I just kept talkin to the windshield like it was my friend & sayin hold on hold on & every song on the radio was about friends & love & loss & it was killin me

plus I didn't know what hospital he was in, I thought Regina had said "Memorial" but the big hospital in SA is "Methodist" & the only Memorial hospital was a Veterans' place & I'm sure Trinidad never served in the military. There were intermittent storms & I figured I would just stop into the nearest hospital & maybe he was on some Health database I pulled into Methodist & there was a rainbow over the hospital. Sure enough he was there

so I went up to his room & he was laying there, not looking sick at all just asleep, Regina said the doctors don't give him much of a chance, apparently he had two strokes a massive on one side, a smaller on the other & they mapped the brain damage which is extensive. But he didn't look sick, his skin wasn't that pallid color & he didn't have an arm or leg all curled up fetal on one side or anything. Regina said he can hear but not respond, he was moving a few fingers on his left side & she encouraged me to talk loudly into his left ear.

So I said hello, picked on him a little, gently, like we've always done with each other, & I read him the poem that I had read to him all those years ago when he was moving away from Albuquerque, & he squeezed my hand & raised his leg & it was very heartening, I felt like he was still in there fighting. Some others came in & Regina & I sat & talked about things & I let her know how many people were pulling for him. During the conversation he made a couple of efforts to lift his head, & I felt like his eyes were opening little by little, & the whole time I was actually feeling some hope, & Regina & I got chuckling a little bit even with things as they were.

Then a few of their friends showed up, some feisty old ladies that always pick on Trino, & they were telling stories & we were laughing & he started trying to pull himself out of the bed! He would roll over onto one side, reach out & grab the hospital bed rail, & try to pull himself up. The whole time he had his eyes closed & couldn't interact with us, but we could tell he was in there & fighting. The doctors don't seem to think there's any hope, even of a recovery, but what I saw told me otherwise. Regina was exhausted & her friends took her home, I decided to stay a while cause I don't know when the next time I see him will be.

So I told him my story about the hummingbirds & the stars, & sat with him another hour, & by the end of it the nurse & I were astounded to see him open his eyes about halfway, tho it was mostly the whites, & he had a vocalization, a small groan, which was the first thing he's said since his event on Tuesday. I am so glad I went down there it hurt to see my friend in as bad a shape as he is, & it's not a pretty picture, but within the context of what has happened he gave me an enormous amount of hope, when yesterday afternoon I had none. His life has been full of laughter & love & poetry & I believe in the healing power of those things.

So things are as good as they can be I guess, except for one really bad thing, which is that they don't have health insurance & Regina is really worried & doesn't know what to do, so I'm gonna organize a fundraiser here in town full of poetry & laughter & love & friends & maybe even raise a little cash for some beautiful people who could use our help. I'll keep y'all posted.

(more from The Tattooed Quaker)


Anyone in Denver like to organize a benefit?


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