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MUSED Literary Magazine.

Sick Day

Adrian Slonaker

Mom´s hand shook the thermometer three-four-five times before
thrusting it under a tongue extending back into mucous soreness.
The mercury judge rapidly ruled on my case:
one-hundred one point five-a reprieve
from Mrs. Thayer, persistent pusher of Laura Ingalls Wilder
and cursive chalk scribbles about Juan Ponce de León.
Sacked down on the sofa, I watched Wink Martindale and Lucille Ball
on fuzzy UHF channels,
coaxing a crushed appetite with a dewdrop-patterned bowl of
chicken noodle saltiness yielding a yellowish skin if ignored.
Long lazy hours of cola-flavored lounging were
the prelude to a delicious shower,
with rhinovirus-induced shivers rendering
rushing curtains of overwarm water
as chrysalis-like as the pearly blue electric blanket
and pair of pillows topping
my trundle bed in the darkness where I rooted for the pathogen.