Oren Thomas Scott would succumb to a morphine drip surrounded by relatives in a hospice on July 24th, 2010.
At the hospital:
I lay sprawled in a chair at the corner of the room, an intern sat at a computer; blue and green light reflected off of his books, and off of tubes and wires connected to my grandfather, who lay breathing on the bed. My sister lay sleeping on the foldout couch next to the chair I occupied.
We were all doing the same thing, in a sense; we were all dying together.
The day before:
The last words my grandfather uttered were, “I will give them hell!”
Now, years later, I remember this phrase.
He protested “broads” (the female persuasion) were horrible at driving. He smoked endless cigars, drank coffee all day long, and spoke cuss words more eloquently than the experienced priest spouts puritanical phrases. He called me Scott. He pissed in a pot, he worked in a garage, and he kept an amazing garden in his backyard.
He was big when I was little, as I grew his stature shrunk, and closer to the end of his life I was taller than he. Craftily, he could put the words “God” and “Damn” into any conversation rather effortlessly. He frequently said, “Son-of-a-Bitching” about anyone and anything that gave him resistance.
He was more motivated in the last years of his life than most people are in there 20’s and 30’s. He was 90 years old when he was taken from this world.
He is missed, and this brought me to the realization that I learned something from my surroundings, from someone so close to me, from my grandfather proper.
If you want to give them something, give them something they can’t handle. Give them hell…
I thought and related with empathy, this is how it went, and I thought others should know:
Just finished some art.
Standing on my porch with a torch, bringing the tip to my lips for a light.
To take it all in: beer in hand, smoking a Spirit, American flag flapping in the wind.
Gazing at infinite skies.
It’s 10 AM, my day begins, its time to win.
He hardly sat to relax, maybe after the day was out.
And then he got up and went back out.
Bucks in my back pocket, backpack full of clothes, strapped and ready to go.
Where I’ll end up, no one knows, a good way to be, I suppose.
Good to see you.
Good to be seen.
Life is a dream.
It is what it seems.
Poor penmanship: computer scholar, scrolling down what I owe-more rows of who knows and exploited expose.
Some I’ve borrowed.
Some I’ve stole.
Can’t see the bars tonight, in order to carry on my day tomorrow.
Can’t spend a dollar, in order to save.
Work place slave, happiness comes in waves-busy all days to the grave.
I could change my point of view.
He drank mostly coffee.
He watched mostly boxing.
I heard stories of him driving home drunk and falling down the hill in the front yard.
He would never admit it in his embarrassment.
He worked hard.
Dad would mention it over and over again at the funeral.
I suppose it was some sort of analogy of how things just happen.
There is no need for admission, excuses, or recognition.
Yet, without him his garden does not flourish, and Grandma sits alone in the kitchen.
Nonstop days, nonstop ways: no time for play, hardly.
And that role isn’t so bad.
Even when Grandpa wasn’t working he was working.
I’d like to live in his ways.
Some of them at least.
Learning from the things that surround you.
These words are just a point of view.
All stayed and none swayed.
Look at you, and your attitude.