Gary Sosnick Detroit 2010




Schvitzing
By Robert Besler

For Izzy Cohen

Wishsh . . . Wishsh . . . Patter . . . Pat, the sound of the oak leaf broom as the leaves fall on the hot skin spraying soap suds and hot, hot water.
Suds run down . . . The leaves find every part and the gentle, warm, abrassive leaves are everywhere.

Izzy is giving another platza to an unsuspecting lad, just moments ago lying on the rack twirling a warn out broom to bring down the steam.
"Turn over" is the whisper and the leaves go to work again with the smell of hot Ivory suds in the hot, humid air.
The body is constantly rearranged being pulled gently to reposition it.
Pulling . . . Pushing . . . Surrounding and all the time the leaves are spun, twirled, using every part of the broom.
Then the head is pulled to the edge and over.
A vigorous shampoo followed by cold water over the head.
"Sit up" and the broom splashes suds everywhere.
With a wash of the feet he is on his way to relax by the pool.

Then into the pool's cold, cold, icey water.
The swimmer dives deep and lets the water bring him to the surface.
Then floats effortlessly.
A breath and he dives down straight for the corner of the pool.
The arms coil and push back from the corner with the flow of the cold water reversing over the body as it glides backward.
A swim to the stairs and out of the pool.

Directly to the whirlpool with its hot, bubbling water.
The feet, legs, body, arms experience a bitting, tingling sensation as the cold flesh meets the hot, bubbling water.
Only one thing would make this day more perfect . . . staying home from work and sleeping in the next day.
Sleep is immediate and grabs the body with a deathlike hold; and memories of: Wishsh . . . Wishsh . . . Patter . . . Pat . . .


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