Saturday 31 August 2013

The Greatest Tragedy is Indifference

I am not at liberty to speak my truth,
it tempered by myth of equality;
I can hold no opinions of my own
should I offend those who would silence me.

I shall be watched, monitored, thought controlled;
moulded, become some mindless automaton
who blind yields to the bid of those that rule,
blind to the loss of self and freedom gone.

I but a small cog in a larger wheel,
a cog of insignificance and worthless say,
yet still while strength remains will mourn the death
of  Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité.

Come let us arm ourselves with righteous voice,
let us fight for return of common good,
let us regain our thoughts and freedoms lost, 
let us embrace again in brotherhood.

Let us fight for our humanity,
for shall we not our spirits surely slain,
we will lose the sense of who and what we are,
we will become a number and not a name.

Anna :o]

I like the French.  Many Brits don’t as they see the French as moaning, but do not understand that the French will readily admit to being "râleurs,” that is unafraid to speak their mind or show their feelings.  To "râler" is not to be confused with rudeness, it is getting things out in the open, sorting out a problem and moving on.  And long may it continue.

I guess with my French heritage – oh so long ago, the time of the Huguenots – I have a propensity to ‘tell it like it is.”  But my ‘telling it like it is’ is never confrontational, always wrapped in soft fluffy blankets with the comfort of moving on sure to follow.

Well apart from my personal life, the bit I have an element of control over, this is not strictly true - for as do my fellow countrymen/women I yield to the dumbing down and regimentation - by the forever increasing rules and regulations - of my life and watch helpless as my personal freedoms are whittled away under the lie of equality and ‘human rights.’  And it is true that most of us, worldwide, are indifferent to both the states (ours - not the US) overt and covert policing of us as we ‘have nothing to hide’…

The health professions’ are fraught with loss of autonomy as medicine and nursing becomes an exercise in ticking boxes, no matter that patients do not necessarily fit the boxes.  (In mental health some patients/clients/service-users do not meet the criteria of the ‘speciality’ of (any of) a particular psychiatrists remit and God help them if they need the input of a psychiatrist – it takes months for one prepared to take them on to be found.)

In the good old days, governance of said professions’ was done under the elected leadership of doctors and nurses (how strange!) but is now that of government quangos, mostly ignorant of the professions’ they supposedly serve.  (But they do not serve, they police in the most oppressive way and bow down to whatever government is in power.)  Added to this are countless regulatory bodies whose aim is to police and find fault – if praise is due, it is never given.

I can only speak with authority on the effect of all this tick boxing, regulation on nursing and although I still love my job, I am afraid in it.  There is a constant need (and knock on effect) to cover my back lest I fall foul of some obscure and ill-thought out regulation, I am constantly treading on eggshells and it is taking its toll and although I really do love my job – I would leave tomorrow if finances permitted.

I am not alone here and would ask you to view this article in The Guardian highlighting a recent survey in which (almost) two-thirds of nurses have considered leaving in the last twelve months as they are so stressed.  It is probable that another Mid-Staffs is happening now as burnout takes its toll and those on the bottom rung of the ladder will be again scapegoated. (Please read of burnout – see how it changes you.)

Doctors too are buckling under the pressure an ever increasing workload and excessive policing of their every action and a recent Pulse survey shows that 43% (of GPs that responded) are classified at very high risk of developing burnout.

I do not doubt within this midst are nurses and doctors who are bad, but also in this midst are doctors and nurses who have been suspended due to vexacious and/or malicious complaints (the compensation culture has a lot to answer for here).  I would therefore ask you to read this excellent Dr No post at Bad Medicine in which he highlights the deaths of 92 doctors who were under ‘Fitness to Practice’ investigation.  I would also ask you to consider signing Dr Helen Bright’s  e-petition here.  Cheers!

The greatest tragedy is indifference…

How did I get here?  Brian at dVerse has us writing of slogans – slogans that catch our attention and remain memorable.  And these thoughts just spilled out…  Thanks Brian.

Monday 19 August 2013


photo by Elena Kalis
Let not this ocean consume me,

let me know of its tides, fathom its depths,
let me ride out its storms, sail on its seas,
let the stars and moon guide me safely to shore,
let me wiggle my toes in the sand.

Let me feel the wind in my hair, the rain on my face,
let the sun beat in my heart filling my soul.  

Let me love life.

Anna :o]

M (thanks M) at Mindlovemisery asks if we are an optimist, pessimist or realist.  I consider myself to be a realist, but realism is often burdensome, dampening the spirit and destroying hope, so I self-medicate with a constant dose of optimism and for the most part remain happy, happy, happy!  (I do so love life!)

Tess at The Mag provided the image and the inspiration for the setting of my words.  Thanks Tess

Poets United kindly opened its pantry.  Thanks PU.

Friday 16 August 2013


is no
longer radar identifiable,
wings clipped until he fell,
fell crashed to earth with an almighty thud,
mind all messed up, synapses spilling from his ears.  Mired in mud he
makes no attempt to free himself, for he, brain unwired, no longer comprehends, 
he has nothing left but fear and emptiness.
So he is here, waiting,
waiting for death
to rub

Anna :o]

Tony at dVerse has us going all mathematical, writing Fibonacci, Pascal’s triangle or triangle poems.  My effort is that of a Fib.  Thanks for the inspiration Tony!

Image: courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons
Author:  Maggie McCain

Tuesday 6 August 2013

City, Early Evening

It is Ramadan
and in nearby mosque müezzin sings
and his soothing rhythmic call to prayer
permeates, sweetens sultry summer air,
plane drones lazily overhead,
distant seagulls squawk and screech,
leaves rustle in a whispered breeze,
mimic ebb and flow of salty seas
gently crashing into breakers.

Beneath canopy of softly swaying trees
discarded life snoozes drunkenly
as fellow flotsam sits beside her,
eases bottle from her hand
and washes down remaining cider.
Shoppers compare buys and chatter,
men discuss as women natter (:o]),
children squeal as pigeons scatter
and in the café dishes clatter
amidst the annoying hiss of coffee maker.

Revellers reach their destination
as bus sets down at central station,
girls alight in giggling groups
tottering on their high-heeled shoes,
dressed to the nines to go a-pubbing.
Lads aloud with false bravado,
raid cash machines with credit card so
to impress the girls with apparent riches,
win their hearts and go a-clubbing. 
Boy racers cruise with music blaring,
annoying all and pigeon scaring,
cars all souped up and flash with chrome.

Vendors vie, shout Chroni-kell, Big Issue,
accordionist squeezes tuneless air,
church swings out its bells a-ringing,
street singer croons in city square,
and in the distance sirens wailing,
paramedics rescue lads a-ailing,
felled by youth and drink excesses
as girls pass by in tiny dresses. 
And in the station
weary workers board their buses,
glad to leave the city rushes,
glad to leave the day behind,
glad that they are going home.

Anna :o]

This poem reflects sight and sounds of my city (in which I work – not live) observed across an hour, early evening.  The call to prayer of the müezzin is a case of poetic licence as, as yet, this does not happen in the UK.  I needed to research to discover as to whether an imam ‘sings’ prayers and found this not to be so and what I hear (often – and it is truly beautiful) is the imams rhythmic voice, which has the quality of beautiful music, breaking through into the night air.

(I couldn’t find an image to truly represent my hours observations, it was between 7-8pm and broad daylight and all was well with my world as I awaited my bus home.  The image is not that of my city.)

This poem also heralds a welcome halt to writers block; oh so many prompts attempted and after a reasonable start, words and thoughts dried up or there was nothing at all.

Shared with the good folk at dVerse Poets Pub OpenLinkNight– thanks dVerse!

Image: courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Author: Brylcreem 2