I Thought Of Clarence Again Today

I don't know how exactly Clarence found a way to stick in my mind all these years. I only met him once, and even then I never actually saw him. Actually I'm pretty sure he was already gone by the time we were introduced, but I have a feeling Clarence will be with me for awhile. Maybe forever. Or at least until I'm old and alone and spending my last days on planet earth like the lady in the cancer ward of the hospital I found myself in sometime in the spring of 1992. 

All I was was a college kid looking to knock off my last few quarters of school so I could start making some bank and begin my life. Jesus it seems like so long ago when everything in my head was new. Seems far longer than it's actually been. My clinical rotations were just something that had to be done to get my degree, so I was doing them, dutifully coming in every morning and making my way through the hospital to follow my patients who had to be followed so I could get out of school. I had just bought a brand new car, because my brand new life was ready to begin. I sat down at the desk where I could see the little old lady who was not a patient I had to follow if the door to her room was opened wide enough. She was dying. 

"Clarence!!!! Clarence could you come in here? Where are you?" The dying woman cried out. She told me far more about herself with those ten words than you would ever imagine. She was a lady of the farm, an echo of the time when a man worked the land from sunup to sundown and sometimes longer taking care of his family and whatever else needed to be taken care of. The carburetor in the tractor that kept gumming up. The cow in the field that was in danger of dying while delivering a calf. That boy up the road not quite right in the head who broke into the barn last year. Before cheap gas, good roads, Wal-Mart, and high fructose corn syrup turned rural America into a wasteland full of mouth breathing fat-ass cretins, the countryside was full of Clarences. Men with good hearts who worked hard and took care of things.  Who took care of their families. 

That's what the dying lady told me with those ten words. In reality she told me far more. Now she was old and alone and scared and desperate, and she called out for Clarence. Because she knew Clarence would make things all right the way he had always done. I sat behind my desk and quietly hoped that Clarence just might show up, and make everything all right. The next morning the door to the lady's room was open wide and I saw an empty bed and dutifully followed the patients I had to follow.

None of us will ever really be gone. We'll all leave behind thoughts and friends and family and people we've touched and influenced in ways we will never realize. I have a little bit of Clarence with me, and now, so do you. I thought of him again today. Probably because I was hoping he might show up and make everything all right. 
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I Thought Of Clarence Again Today
I Thought Of Clarence Again Today
Reviewed by malaria
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Rating : 4.5