The Love Virus
By Eleni Cay
When Katie finds out that her increasingly unresponsive legs and extreme fatigue is due to Multiple Sclerosis, she rides an emotional rollercoaster – anger, denial and fear – when faced with a wheelchair-bound existence. She puts her studies at Oxford on hold, and she splits up from her fiancé, Mark, even though she still loves him. While undergoing treatment, Katie is diagnosed with MS2 – a virus that paralyses the mind. In hospital, Katie has to cope with her irritating bedfellows who argue constantly, and where she is treated by Dr Andrews, a handsome psychologist. The closer she gets to him however, the worse her pain becomes. Compounding Katie’s struggle is Mark, who returns to her bedside day after day. Once Katie begins Dr Andrews’ new experimental MS2 treatment, Mark can’t recognise her anymore. He begins to wonder if Katie will ever be cured.
I remembered how dad took me to
a jazz club once. He liked blue notes
and he liked this song.
He couldn’t stand mum’s cheesy pop.
Too smooth for him.
He liked the dissonance.
Not jarred jazz, but a blue note
here and there,
that can bring the whole song
to another level.
Perhaps this whole
Multiple Sclerosis thing
was one of those blue notes.
It added some novelty to the ordinary,
some new vocabulary we all had to learn,
something new for friends to Facebook
and to Tweet about.
Some modifications to my diet,
to my personalised Google ads.
Some changes to my thinking,
to my love life …
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The Love Virus
Eleni Cay is a Slovakian-born poet living in Norway. Her award-winning first collection was published by Parthian Books and her second poetry collection ‘Love Algorithm’ is forthcoming by Eyewear Press. Eleni’s debut novel ‘The Love Virus’ was published in spring 2020.
Bonus material with accompanying poems and videopoems are available from my website.
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See you on your next coffee break!
Mary Anne xxx