Thursday, December 17, 2009

OPINION: Reflecting On The Passing Of A Raven

Magdalena Potluck
By Don Wiltshire

I really do enjoy my weekend walks with my dog, Abby, around the streets of Magdalena. I’m always fascinated with the changes that have occurred within the last week. Some things have fallen apart, blown away by the wind. Other things have been fixed up. Some residents have moved in, others have moved away. Abby spends most of her time in an “olfactory world,” one that I cannot fully participate in. There must be plenty of “messages” in those bushes on the corner; she spends many minutes carefully sniffing out and analyzing each and every one of them. Occasionally, a “blog-entry” of her own will be offered up.
Toward the end of this weekend’s walk, we came upon a dead raven. Normally road-kill is a flag to “look aside”; pay no attention; “leave it, Abby. NOT a snack.” However, this particular carcass invited us to respectfully come forward.
Since living in Magdalena, the raven has become one of my self-appointed Totem Animals. Never before had I paid much attention to ravens who were apparently talking “to me.” They seem to have taken a special interest in my backyard projects; swooping in and offering up their comments. Their language, when not calling to each other, consists of a series of clicks and throaty chortles, reminiscent of a porpoise. I have even been honored enough to witness some of their “dances.” I don’t always understand their messages but they make me feel more “connected” to the natural world.
So, it was with appreciation and respect that we listened to the message that this raven had for us, even in death: “Pay attention there guys, you could be next.” That was not necessarily a morbid message, just a gentle reminder of our own mortality; to really appreciate what IS.
We could be next, indeed. I have spent most of the last week dealing with my own personal plumbing which is now falling apart. The human body does not seem to be designed to last much longer than thirty or forty years. After that, tubes get clogged, parts wear out. The prostate’s stranglehold relationship on my urethra has become of particular interest to me of late. I have put in a request for a re-design of that particular sub-assembly but have not heard back yet.
It was with some apprehension then that I asked my doctor last week, if “Flomax might be right for me.” His first diagnosis was that I have been watching far too much television. Then he agreed that “yes,” Flomax WAS right for me! So much for my sarcastic column a couple of weeks ago.
Off it was then, to the pharmacist to pick up the magic drugs that would shrink my over inflated prostate. I knew that because I had REFUSED to pay $15 a month to the pharmaceutical company of my choice (Medicare Part D), I was in for a hard time. “That will be $126.90,” the pharmacist mumbled apologetically. “What?” I stammered, “that’s more than $4.20 for each capsule!” There must be a great deal of magic indeed, in each pill. Still, I suppose it covers the cost of “research and development.”
How is it then that I can order up the same drug from Canada for $22.79? That’s only 76 cents per capsule. There must be far less magic (or marketing) in those capsules. You can be sure that I will be searching around for alternative treatments. A good place to start seems to be Ben Ong’s book, All About the Prostate. I have a feeling that there are just as many magical cures in the natural world as there are in the Big Pharmaceutical Companies. I’m also wondering what other organs and tissues in my body might be shrunk with Flomax’s alpha-blockers. Be sure to pick up your medical reference and recreational reading material early: the Magdalena Public Library will be closed from Dec 24 till Jan 4th for the holidays.
Rest now, dear Raven, so that your spirit might help others along the Way.

So, do you have any Comments? Problems? Solutions? Up coming Events? Cheaper Flomax? Contact me at or (575) 854-3370.

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