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Volume 14, Number 5—May 2008

Another Dimension

Bedtime at Nana and Pop’s House

Stan Shuman
Requires a hug and a kiss
From the two year old
In Mickey Mouse pajamas,
Climbing on my lap,
Interrupting the crime-news on T.V.,
Smack! a kiss on the left ear,
Smack! a kiss on the right,
"Eye, eye," the imp insists,
(Thank goodness for eyeglasses)
"Nose, nose," comes the next command.
I panic (what to do?!)
This adorable, cute, bright, affectionate kid,
My own grandchild,
Heading for the lips, now!
(What a strange ritual
The young parents have invented)
All I can think of, are GERMS:
Giardia, Hemophilus, E. coli,
Strep, Staph, and Pneumo,
A host of enterorespiratory viruses
Multiplying on this adorable child’s pink
Mucous membranes, fingertips,
His droplets and aerosols a sea of microbes.
I suddenly thrust him
At arm’s length, crown him
With a kiss on the curls
Of the cranium, blo
A few more long-distanc
Kisses as I hand him
To his mother
(Before any more infestation
can occur).
I return to the gloomy T.V.,
Wondering what the incubation
Periods are for the most likely
Forms of gastroenteritis, hepatitis,
Pink eye, U.R.I. and
Bronchopneumonia.
How fortunate the non-medical
Parents and co-grandparents,
Who hug, hug; kiss, kiss
Without worry or care!

DOI: 10.3201/eid1405.AD1405

Stan Schuman is professor emeritus at the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA, and founding editor of the Journal of Agromedicine (Haworth Medical Press, New York, 1974).

Table of Contents – Volume 14, Number 5—May 2008

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