Blood Poetry

Haematopoiesis: blood poetry. Actually, the word comes from two Greek words, αἷμα, “blood” and ποιεῖν,”to make”, it refers to the body’s capacity to make blood cells. In adults this predominantly occurs in the bone marrow, and when the system malfunctions you get diseases such as leukemia. But to me the word sounds like blood poetry.

The family in Breaking Bad is celebrating Walt’s remission. He’s been pronounced cancer free. Hank, Walt’s DEA brother in law, tells of an incident that occurred early in the series. He tells it as a story, with a bottle of tequila, the family gathered around the swimming pool. A giant tortoise ambles slowly across the desert, a decapitated bloody human head strapped to its body. When it reaches a group of DEA agents it explodes. Hank explains that this was the Mexican drug cartel’s way of sending a message: the head belonged to a snitch named “Tortuga” (Tortoise). Hank tries to explain the “how” of the scenario. “It’s not a metaphor, not an analogy, it’s a, Walt, what’s the word I’m looking for?” he asks. Walt refuses to participate, stares stonily into the distance. Hank finally finds the word: “poetic,” he says. Softly he repeats the word to himself: “poetic.”

One thought on “Blood Poetry

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