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Mayo Clinic

In the past month I’ve seen two people who say they need to go to the Mayo Clinic. They say the name like it can work miracles. Their illnesses aren’t accidents. They are self-imposed addictions, possessions, where they are holding their own bodies hostage because they find themselves bringing up to their mouths another cigarette or can of beer or forkfull of chemicals that are in the guise of food. It is all an illusion, a mirage they can’t see through.

There was a patron I knew who was named Mr. Mayo. He used to say “The past is history, the future is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.” He said it over and over – every time I saw him. He probably said it to everyone he saw. He said it like it was a divine revelation.

Maybe that is the true Mayo Clinic. Maybe that is our miracle cure. That idea, corny as it is.

Not a 10 hour bus trip to a hospital that may or may not have a cure. But right here, right now, to be here as is, painful as that is, to not run away from who we are, as individuals, as a nation.

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