Tag Archives: heart surgery

Sun Dance

It won’t be a sun dance for me

I won’t have my chest pierced with sinews

Or dance myself into revelations at the edge of coma

But I will deliver myself

To be cut open

My sacrificial heart will be lifted into the cold light

Of an operating room

The table will just be a table not an altar

There won’t be a biblical patriarch in attendance

Quoting hallucinatory admonitions

I do not embody the guilt of my ancestors

Yet I wonder how blood sacrifice came to be exalted

Priestly slaughter of innocents to satiate unknowable gods

I’m certain that the creatures slit open

In some bizarre ritual transference of guilty projections

Of shame

Of fear

Of hatred

Did not feel ennobled by the experience

Just hard done by

Like royal attendants walled up in the tombs of kings

Or victims of Aztec flower wars

Climbing to the top of some pyramid

To watch the sun glinting off an obsidian blade poised high

Before the downward thrust

It must take a lot of misplaced religious fervor

To overcome the realization that death is present

And soon you won’t be

More to the point, willingly

I wonder at the intensity of self-sacrifice

Allowing a suspension of flight or fight response to imminent threat

Choosing acquiescence to commands

Hoping that unbelievable assurances hide a shimmer of truth

Not a black hole of nothingness

Trusting in mysteries



David Trudel   ©  2013



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Filed under Cardiology, Poetry

Upcoming surgery

I am writing to let you know that I have been diagnosed with a heart condition called aortic stenosis, which means my aortic valve isn’t functioning properly.  As a result, I’ll be undergoing surgery on July 22nd  to replace the faulty valve with a mechanical one.  I’ll be in hospital for about a week and full recovery takes about three months.


It’s likely that this was something I was born with and has gradually worsened over the years.  I haven’t experienced any symptoms and if my family physician hadn’t noticed a heart murmur and sent me for tests, the first sign of the disease may well have been a massive heart attack. Ironically, I have never felt better after losing so much weight over the past year or so, moving to a raw/vegan diet and exercising on an almost daily basis.


As much as I know that there will be pain and inconvenience involved through this process I am looking at it as a positive experience that will help to keep me around for many years to come. So rather than keeping quiet about it I’ve decided to let everyone know what I’m going through. I will try to keep the heartsick metaphors to a minimum on the poetry front, but no promises on that.







Filed under Passing Thoughts