I've caught an unknown virus: I
would like to drop right here and die,
collapse upon the kitchen floor;
maybe I will but not before
I've ironed shirts and found the cash
for dinner money, riddled ash
from our wood stove, fed kids, dogs, fish -
I sense a mega-sneeze; "Attish ..."
the phone ... it's double gazing.."OO"
I started so I finish. Two
bonus explosions, she rings off;
I shiver, ooze, drip, shake and cough,
my nose is sore, my legs aren't there,
I've this strange feeling in my hair
as if it's turned to drowned sheep's wool
or strangling tentacles. I pull
what's left of me together and
prepare a tray with clammy hands;
broth, beer, asparagus souffle
for him who's been (since last Tuesday,
nearly a week) confined to bed.
"Poor chap," old Doctor Watson said.
"He needs light food and lots to drink,
plenty of rest and care. I think
he's down with one dread ilness you
will never suffer from - Male Flu.",