Where Does Your Mind Go When Your Body Is Near Death?

In deep delirium after a catastrophic heart attack, my subconscious ran wild

Eugene Costello
Human Parts
Published in
8 min readJan 11, 2019

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Photo by Josh Marshall on Unsplash

I am in New York City, at JFK. At the check-in desk, a young woman with a ponytail is taking deep breaths and pointedly adding “Sir” or “Madam” to her repeated apology for the lateness of the plane. The room is crowded and the mood is ugly. Some of the passengers are expressing deeply unpleasant views about Mexicans, pinkos, and snowflakes. I start arguing with them about how Donald Trump’s America is becoming a hateful place, and a betrayal of the values of liberty and open-mindedness upon which it was founded. A pretty young woman who looks like a glamorous version of my ex-wife, Moira, puts her hand on my arm. She tells me I am a hero and she agrees with every word I say. Her name is Lucy, she says, as she kisses me on both cheeks. “Look, I have to go now but I promise I will come and see you in Europe. I love you, Eugene… ”

Only a handful of passengers are left, and some are still fuming from my rant. So with hours to kill before my flight home, I head towards the subway. A gang is hanging around the turnstiles, including a Latina woman with a ponytail and a baseball cap whom I recognize from the airport check-in desk. She starts telling the others I’m a Trump hater and the gang becomes restless…

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