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Sunday, October 10, 2021


by Gil Fagiani

Richmond Center for Rehabilitation, Staten Island
my son says, as his new roommate: black teeth,
angry eyes, mumbles to himself, as he storms
out the door when I ask him to lower the TV.
Chubby, gentle, slow-talking Fluffy went every-
where with his pink teddy bear: the bedroom,
the dining room, the dentist’s office, he even
took showers with him—“that’s how he got
the nickname Fluffy,” my son reminds me.
He loved to sing Sammy Davis Jr. songs with Jill:
“Everything Is Beautiful, ” “The Candy Man.”
Last week he reportedly touched her backside,
“inappropriate contact,” the head nurse declared.
“He was sent to another unit,” my son says.
“Everyone on the ward misses Fluffy, even Jill.”

Gil Fagiani (1945-2018) was a translator, essayist, short-story writer, and poet. He  published nine books of poetry: Connecticut Trilogy: Stone Walls, Chianti in Connecticut, Missing Madonnas; as well as his collections Logos, A Blanquito in El Barrio, and Rooks; plus three chapbooks, Crossing 116th Street, Grandpa’s Wine, and Serfs of Psychiatry.