Sunday, 26 June 2011

Medical poetry

In 2010, I needed surgery for bowel cancer. Fortunately, the surgery appears to have been successful, and with no adverse consequences apart from some occasional uncomfortable effects on my internal plumbing works, on which I choose not to elaborate. I found that writing poetry helped me to cope with the challenge of my medical treatment. Not all of it is appropriate for those of a squeamish disposition, but here are a few which avoid detailed examination of my plumbing problems.  Despite various whinges one hears about the NHS, I can only say that with a few minor exceptions, all the treatment I received at the hands of the NHS was excellent, and it was a truly humbling experience to encounter so many wonderful health workers, some of whom earn a very modest living for doing a superb job in a dedicated fashion.

  Fizzy Drinks
When a nurse brings you a fizzy drink
Be afraid, be very afraid.
Despite what you may initially think
It's sure as hell not lemonade.
It could be Kleen-Prep; God help you
Which tastes both fizzy and foul.
It makes you burp on its way down
And does nasty things to your bowel.
If it's not Kleen Prep, it could be Potassium
Which looks like Alka-Seltser.
Hold your nose and drink it slow
Or you'll bee the world's best belcher.
I must go now, and disappear
And look as if I'm busy.
'Cos here comes the nurse with a glass, I fear,
And it looks as though it's fizzy.

St. Patrick’s Day
It’s a grand day at St. Mary’s, St Patrick’s Day is here
So take us off the saline and put us on the beer.
Seventeenth of March is a day which should be lively,
So get hold of some Guinness
And let’s have it on the I/V.
The Irish patients and the nurse, Carleen the Dublin dolly,
Will have a Paddy’s Day parade.
Our float will be a trolley.
We’ll whiz around the corridors.
There’ll be no end of fun.
And then, to have some extra craic
We’re off to Cheltenham.

St Mary’s Finest
The famous Florence Nightingale was Lady with the Lamp.
She nursed the British soldiers in their foul Crimean camp.
Now one-five-five years later, and I’ve had my reversal,
But for the grief it caused my bottom I had no rehearsal.
One Friday night the pain was bad. For respite I was yearning.
A great nurse gave me Sudocrem, which stopped my bum from burning.
So thank you, Tracey Myers. You really are a star,
And you’ll  go down in history as the Lady with the Jar.

Catheter Tube     (“to the tune of “Blue Suede shoes”)

Well I’m feeling unsteady
But here’s the physio.
He says to get ready
So go, man, go.
But don’t you
Step on my catheter tube.
 Well you can do anything
But stay off my catheter tube.

Well you can march me around
With an oxygen mask
And within reason
I’ll do what you ask.
You can make me walk all the way to the loo
But stand on that tube and I’ll swing for you
And don’t you
Step on my catheter tube.
 Well you can do anything
But stay off my catheter tube.

Well you can trash my bed
Make me hike for hours
Drink my squash
And steal my flowers
You can make me walk ‘cos that’s your job
But I’m gonna squawk if you hurt my knob
So don’t you
Step on my catheter tube.
 Well you can do anything
But stay off my catheter tube.

G-I  Joes

There’s a  ward at St Mary’s, I’m pleased to report
Where the standard of care is phenomenal
For Gastro-intestinal  (called “G-I” for short)
And all other ailments abdominal.

Each G-I Patient is given a bed
Though he’s  not  fought for U.S of A.
Where he’s cared for and watered (but may not be fed)
While his State is improved by his stay.

The doctors and nurses and their back-up team
Come from several different nations.
With care and devotion they keep the place clean
And deliver superb ministrations.

So if you’ve the misfortune to be struck down low
By an ailment for which you didn’t plan. It
Will help you if you are a new G-I Joe
In the ward which is known as Charles Pannett. 

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