Title: Hospital

Author: Geoff Cochrane

In: Sport 27: Spring 2001

Publication details: Fergus Barrowman, October 2001

Part of: Sport

Conditions of use



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Sport 27: Spring 2001



‘I hopped about a bit? Before falling over?’

‘You hopped. The villain fled.’

‘And what did you do then.’

‘I remembered my dinky lady's cellphone. Summoned the appropriate services. Counselled my fretful spouse to lie where he had fallen.’

‘I married a lion,’ says Jones.

page 43

‘You married a lioness,’ says Shura.

Some tiny bones in his foot have been splintered. Morphine's icy juice tinkles through his veins. The hours pass in dreamy alienation from pain.

Toward dawn, Shura goes outside to smoke a cigarette and watch the sun come up. In his wife's absence, Jones is visited by a chap in saffron robes.

The monk's head is shaven, his specs purple-lensed. ‘I hope you like barley sugars. I myself am partial to them.’

‘You have the advantage, sir.’

‘Forgive me. Some many years ago, you saved me from incarceration.’

‘I don't remember.’

‘No matter. I sensed you to be an enemy of hatred and delusion. And I think you remain a friend to the four virtues, the Palaces of Brahma.’

‘Tell me, worthy one—Is it wise to believe that all actions are symbolic?’

‘To shine one's shoes or drive one's car or frame one's closing argument in a spirit of prayerful optimism—This is wisdom indeed.’

‘And my daughter? Safe at last? Persuaded to forsake the frozen sterility of the South Pole?’

‘Even as we speak, Simone is flying home aboard an RNZAF Hercules.’

‘Did you know, arhat, that Ice Station Zebra was Howard Hughes's favourite movie?’

‘It kinda figures, Dave.’