Monday, July 13, 2015

Tinea Capitis and a Recollection of Three Letters

When I was looking for work after graduating, NatWest closed my account suddenly. That week I received three letters. The first was a letter from the local surgery informing me that I had been struck off my doctor's practice list. Next came the letter from the bank, explaining that it was costing more money than was in the account to keep it open. As it turned out, a member of the surgery's administration staff had made an error, easily resolved with a single phone call, but the incontrovertible letter from the bank affected me deeply.

In my mind the bank's decision betrayed a broader appraisal of my prospects. I was only 21. It was damning, and dejection, despite a switch to Lloyds that same afternoon, despite all the subsequent years, lingers, lingers long after that week in 1993, a week when it felt like my health and finances were being dismantled following certification of my death, a week when a third letter informed me that my application to be a marketing assistant for a firm selling fire-protection paint had been unsuccessful.

Alas, there is no money in poetry and so the bank's expediency, but for its lack of kindliness, appears to be vindicated; and I am here, at a place where morbidity and mortality meet, 1.46 am, taking photos of my feet. My scalp half beset with ringworm, as I am half jaundiced by the physic, with yellowing eyes and clay stools, I make a study of feet (the redeemer's feet?). For a malady so trivial I take overmuch, overmuch.