Gargoyle, from the French

gargouille, throat, gullet (dragon) from Latin gurgulio,

gar, “to swallow,” gurgling sound of water

from this grotesque spout conveying rainwater away

from walls and mortar, always turned away

from spire, prayers, hymns, smoke and fire.

 

gargoyle

Gargoyle, Notre Dame, Paris

Advertisements

Ode for Stanley in His Garden

van Gogh irises

some of Vincent van Gogh’s irises

It’s early for irises, Stanley. But today

daffodils are shouting yellow and white calls

to me from my garden, “Come outside!

Leave that poem for tonight! Touch blooms!”

Maybe it was you, Stanley, calling me.

 

still life

Vaccine

Latin vaccinus, from vacca “cow” because of

early use of cowpox virus against smallpox.

I remember the massive Sabin oral vaccine

for polio first developed by Jonas Salk.

Vaccines stimulate the production of antibodies

provide immunity against one or several diseases

using disease to treat without inducing disease.

“Our greatest responsibility,” said Dr. Salk Vaccine,

“is to be good ancestors.” We too

use our life to inoculate against life.

A 1963 poster featured CDC’s national symbol of public health, the “Wellbee”, who was encouraging the public to receive an Sabin Type-II oral polio vaccine in campaigns across the United States. (via Wikimedia)