Monday, December 24, 2012


The house is empty
It was never so
Filled with laughter
We watched them go.

A while ago
We were four
We loved it so
Not any more.

Daughter one got old enough to marry
We were all happy
Son one joined the army
Still recall when I changed his nappy

We grew old together
Now he doesn't remember a thing
I'm all alone in this big house
My dear husband's here; his mind no longer functioning.

Image courtesy

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Wrapped in swaddling clothes
Water seeping through
A mixture of smells, mingling
With his cries

Left at the mercy of the elements
Sun, wind, earth and rain
Soiling himself, no one to clean
His body

She wasn't prepared for him
He'd given nine months notice
A period spent in regret
No one to advice

She doesn't know the father
Neither sees herself a mother
She's done her part
She can give no more

Could it be the hunger?
Or the exposure to the elements
Or the lack of his mother's bosom?
All too soon, he's gone
Would have been a Blessing.

Image courtesy

Monday, October 29, 2012


If something had gone wrong
and you bled to death.

If something had gone wrong
and I had come out with my hands and not my head.

If something had gone wrong
and my placenta had detached before time.

If something had gone wrong
and I didn't cry at birth.

If something had gone wrong
and you couldn't get to the hospital before I came out.

If something had gone wrong
and I chose to come earlier than nine months.

If something had gone wrong
and somehow my parts weren't fully formed.

If something had gone wrong
and my head got stuck during delivery.

But nothing went wrong
So we can safely say...

I am a miracle.

Image courtesy.

Saturday, October 20, 2012


Running, rushing
Asking, what happened?
The disbelief, the denial, the grief.
You can't know how they feel.

Sitting, standing, pacing
Asking self, what did I do wrong?
Not knowing, will he survive?
You can't know how they feel.

Cleaning, brushing, changing, washing
Stains - vomit, urine, saliva - smells
smoothen creases on the bed
You can't know how they feel.

Healing, dying?
Gets better, relapses
Tests, results, more tests, more results. Bills.
You cant know how they feel.

Gazing, Calling, staring
Phone calls, relatives
Whispering, talking, hushed tones, raised voices
You can't know how they feel.

Crying, sighing
Preparing ; home or morgue?
The former, joy; the latter, sorrow
You can't know how they feel.



Tuesday, October 16, 2012


There comes a time...
The foamy lather, and golden crystals
Of Alcohol, in bottle after bottle
No longer gives you that boost you require
Only succeeds in making you feel little.

There comes a time...
Wrap after wrap, of cigar after cigar
Only leaves you with the nausea
The smoke, rising through your lungs
Only succeeds, in quenching your desire.

There comes a time...
Having Belinda, Felicia, Nadia and Patricia
leads to no satisfaction
All become a rottenness to your bones
A rising sense of confusion.

There comes a time...
The dripping fat, of fats and fries
And the sugary coating of pastries
Only causes you to shake your head in rejection
And return all those pennies.

Image courtesy

Friday, October 5, 2012


Just one more time, if I could
If it were possible, for me to do
Somehow to get up from under
This weight that holds me down
One more time to make things right.

Just one more time, please I beg you
To be free of these tubes and all these fluids
coursing through my veins, breaking me down
just a word
I need to say.

Just one more time, don't deny me this
Now I know, a miracle it is
Waking up and hearing their laughter
The children playing, they angered me then
One more time, is that too much to ask?

Just one more time, out of this bed
To smell the roses, and see the sun
To feel the rain that fills the earth
To greet the neighbours, each and every one
one more time is all I pray.

Just one more time is all I ask for
To hold her hand and say it's okay
To see her eyes, the sparkles of grey
To say thank you for all those times
Just one more time will make it right.

Image courtesy

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Hand in hand they walk,

Indivisible, impossible to tell apart

A terror to many

wrecking havoc along their path.

Without gun or sword

Without bomb or bullet

They strike!

A deadly duet.

They can't exist in isolation

A weird symbiosis

Needing each other to exist

Crippling a nation's resources.

A mother loses her child

They lurk in the shadows, grinning

A child loses his mother

They are salivating.

What can be done?

To rid the world of these two

Unfortunately, the answer lies

In the hands of a privileged few.

Image courtesy

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Papa I see you

With your Immaculate white coat

And your stethoscope strung on your shoulder

I hate to give you this jolt

But dear Papa, I don't wanna be a Doctor.

Papa, I know you have a big hospital

I know you built it from scratch

Rightfully, you expect your son to take over

But here's a newsflash...

Papa, I don't wanna be a Doctor.

Papa, quit forcing me to read the sciences

Physics,Chemistry and Biology

Newton's Laws, Periodic tables and experiments

I have no love for the laboratory

And I know Papa, I don't wanna be a Doctor.

Papa, I see you married Mom, also a Doctor

And you wonder where I got my genes from

I see this has caused quite a few arguments

And my dear Momma crying some

Just because I don't wanna be a Doctor.

Papa, I know I'm breaking your heart

What will you tell all your friends

That after spending so much on him

You have a son who all he does is sings

A son who doesn't wanna be a Doctor.

Image 1,2

Monday, September 24, 2012


Hey Doctor, how are you?

You seem awful stressed out today

I noticed a tear at the hem of your coat

Don't you think you should have it checked?

Don't worry, I will get someone to check it out for you.

No Doctor, there is nothing wrong with me

Rather I am here to help you out

I have about a thousand troops

All I need to do is make a call

And they would all come running down.

I am Lord and Master of the High Seas

Surely, you would have heard of me

At the sound of my voice the pirates quiver

I was sent to rid the world of evil

I am a very important person as you can see.

I am wealthy beyond measure

I have castles in France, Belgium and Spain

Servants to meet my every pleasure

I have a banquet everynight

Doc, you should come visit me one of these days.

No, Doctor, you cannot stick that needle into me

You obviously don't know who I am

I'm only here on vacation to help the world

There's nothing wrong with me

No Doctor; no, don't do that!

NB: Patients with Grandiose Delusions have an unshakeable belief they are someone very important, usually larger than life ; they also have an engaging personality and are filled with stories that can easily get you carried away. Read more about it here.

Friday, September 21, 2012


Why bother? She will die anyway

I know, but I have to do something

But the same thing happens everyday

I agree, but I just can't sit and do nothing.

You are tired, go to sleep

No I can't, I have to check if she's fine

It doesn't matter, the monitors will still beep

I know, but the responsibility is still mine.

Tell her to go home, nothing can be done.

No I won't, I can't give up hope

Don't touch her! Don't you know its airborne?

I have to, will wash later with soap.

Why not leave? You're not making any difference

Doesn't matter, I have to put in my quota

look at you quoting such nonsense

Be that as it may, she's still someone's daughter.

Image courtesy

Sunday, August 26, 2012


Bout after bout
Racking the chest
lighting it aflame
Surely, his chest would explode

The sound is grating
You can almost hear the lungs tearing up into little pieces
Debris rising up the chest
Spewing out, covered in blood

Particles spread, happy for the release
The confinement of the poorly ventilated room
They don't have far to run
Another victim, seated close by, fertile ground.

It takes its toll on him
Now a shadow of who he used to be
His body drenched in sweat
His body, hot as coals.


Saturday, August 25, 2012


The raw materials are all there
He doesn't have to go far
The trees are behind the village square
Strong, sturdy Bamboo trees.

He learnt the art from his father
Who learnt the art from his father
Passed on from generation to generation
Now threatened with the advent of civilization.

But still, his customers will come
An ironic by product of increased civilization
They fear going to the modern hospitals
Fear of almost certain amputation.

He is a traditional bone setter
Tibia, Femur, humerus? It doesn't matter
It doesn't matter what the X-ray says
Even if the limb is dead, dying or a real nuisance.

Image 1,2,3


He expects the same attention he's used to -
"Your lordship", "Your Eminence", "Dear Sir"
"Would you like a..?" "Can I get you a...?"
"Are you comfortable Sir?" "Should I adjust your chair?"

But all the oohs and aahs stop at the door
The ER strips you of all that.
Here everyone is equal, or supposed to be
Here some things don't matter any more.

What strikes him first is the sight
Of suffering humanity and blood
A sight far removed from what he's used to
Dapper Suits, smiling faces in dainty attire.

He struggles to get any attention
"Do you know who I am?" He is tempted to say
But a slight glance to the boy with third degree burns beside him
Makes him realise, probably his headache isn't really that important.

Addenda: Inspired by my meeting with an influential politician in the ER who I pretended to know nothing about :)


Have you tried my new delicacy?
Fried and dripping in glimmering oil
The fat, fried to a golden crust
You won't regret trying this.

I always have a taste of the dishes
To ensure all the ingredients are in their right proportion
I also need to take some cooking home
Afterall, I can't let it go to waste.

I need to keep up a portly appearance
So my clients can tell from the way I look
That I don't compromise on their nutrition
How can they tell if I don't look good?

I spend my life among pastries and sweets
It's no wonder I'm a full plus size
I can't do anything about it
It is the life I have chosen.

What Health risks are you exposed to by virtue of what you love doing?


Tuesday, August 21, 2012


If only I had listened...

The advice was simple enough to read

Reduce your fat intake it said

Reduce your salt it said

Exercise regularly it said

If only I had listened.

If only I had listened...

I was told to take one tablet a day

That's not too much you say

But when I miss taking one I still feel okay

So I stopped taking it every day

If only I had listened.

If only I had listened...

I was told it was hereditary

That it could be passed down my line in the family tree

There was no sense in this, far as I could see

There was no likelihood of it affecting me,

If only I had listened.

If only I had listened...

Please stop smoking she said

You're slowly becoming an Alcoholic she pleaded

I told her she should stop being scared

It was all just in her head, I said

If only I had listened.

If only I had listened...

I was told we both carried the Sickle cell gene

But that didn't stop us from being keen

To get married , they were just being mean

I had suffered so much to get this win

If only I had listened.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012


Hello mom, it's good to see you after all this time

I've been abroad trying to make some golden dime

I'm back to splurge you with so much money

Back from the land flowing with milk and honey.

Hello mom, you don't seem too excited

It's me, Michael, your son, playing for Manchester United

Can't you see me as I wave to you, it's been so long

Mom! Is there something wrong?

Mom, why do you keep calling me Daniel

You named me yourself, my name is Michael

And why do you keep talking to daddy?

We both know he's been dead 20 years already.

Mom, why do you keep misplacing everything?

I found your watch yesterday in the washing machine

And why did you pay the salesman 1000 dollars?

For an item that cost only 10 dollars.

Mom, I'm so sorry I neglected you

But I'd gladly give away all this wealth for your memory to be returned to you

For what's the use if I'm so wealthy

And my dear mom can't remember me.




Tuesday, June 19, 2012


Did I lock the door?

I'm not so sure

Its just been a few minutes

I've not walked too far

Will go back and check it.

There! Its locked. That's good

Now I'm sure, I can leave

Time to continue on my way, I'm running late...

...Wait! Am I really sure?

What if I turned the key without locking it?

Must go back again

But this time wash my hands

For surely, they've been soiled

Slight stain on the side

A good scrub should wash it off.

There! Hands Clean, time to go...

...Wait! Did I just touch the toilet handle?

Can't possibly leave with hands contaminated

I have to start all over again

Have to wash my hands over again.

NB: The Oxford handbook describes Compulsions as senseless, repeated rituals. And Obsessions as stereotyped, purposeless words, ideas, or phrases that come into the mind.

Image link 1
And 2

Sunday, June 17, 2012


I once knew a Doctor's wife

You would have thought she was a Doctor

but she had no degree

apart from her love for her husband.

She knew all the doses of the drugs

She knew where all the drugs were kept

She knew most of the patients in the wards

She could almost guess the right diagnosis if asked.

She attended the Women's Ante-Natal classes

And even got up to lecture the pregnant women

She monitored the nurses

And kept a keen eye on the accounts.

I never had a problem with the Doctor's wife

Until that fateful day

When she put her head through my door

And suggested what drug I should give my patient.


Monday, June 11, 2012


Try as he could

He could not wash away the blood stains

His hands remained crimson red

He turned on the hot water.

He'd done it hundreds of times

This couldn't be any different

Could it?

Bar after bar of soap lathering into the sink.

Was he hallucinating?

Tired and spent, he slid into his room

Surely, after a nap, it would all be gone

Must prepare for tomorrow.

The baby voices came through the night

Shrill, distinct, eerie

They laughed; their chatter hounding him

He clutched his sheets.

"What do you want?" He asked

They continued to haunt him

Waking up, his body drenched with sweat

A new day, he had a decision to make.

Out, damned spot! Out, I say! ~Lady Macbeth.

Sunday, June 10, 2012


The fever raged like a wildfire through her body

Eating up everything in sight

It burned, the embers searing her being

Finally releasing the ashes on her frail skin

Her skin was hot, so hot.

She was too weak to move

Her limbs unable to respond to the simple order by her mind.

"Move!" They were told

But all they could do was hang limply by her side

They could easily have belonged to someone else.

Her mind which gave the orders already facing its own crisis

The real had become the unreal

The known had become the unknown

Her mind played tricks on her

As the virus marched unopposed through her brain.

Her body showed the result of the assault

Her weight no more than a ten year old's

Her skin as pale as the mid-day sun

Her legs spindly as spaghetti sticks

A bag of bones, she looked, pleading at me.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


There were so many cars

Glistening under the heat of the mid-day sun

Cars brought by Beautiful people

Indeed, the beautiful ones are already born.

It could easily have been a rally for a political party

Or business men gathered, waiting for a meeting

It could have passed for a student congress

Or a wealthy society meeting.

Looking from afar, it would appear so

A closer look would change that point of view

For what appeared like a society meeting

Were grieved people, all waiting for a cue.

Its been a national disaster

Of the worst kind any can imagine

The mournful faces come to identify their dead

Their loved young, adult, and aging.

Image courtesy

Thursday, May 31, 2012


They glance at each other

Silently, they appraise each other

None is in the mood to talk

Each lost in his own thoughts.

They sit, each tick of the clock

Multiplying the beat of their heart

Nobody knows what to expect

Each afraid of what they would hear.

The door opens slightly

They glance in, trying to get a glimpse

They can't read his expression

They feel like sheep to the slaughter.

The first goes in

She looks back for reassurance

There is none

Her legs wobble.

The door is shut

They return to the worn magazines.

Their minds unable to see the pictures

The tension is palpable.

It seems an eternity

She finally re-appears

No smile...

They all sigh.

Image courtesy

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


He watches

Waiting for the right time to strike

He is patient, calculating, devious in his methods

Not one anybody would like.

He follows

Under the cover of darkness

A bag of sorrows

Enough to quench anyone's happiness.

He smells the fear

In the heart of his intended target

He longs to get near

To whisper a threat she won't forget.

She hears him

Through the stillness of the dark night

She is ready

Tired of running, this time she shall fight.

She is armed

No more will he harm her family

He is overwhelmed,

Disappointed, he retreats hastily.

NB: The best way to prevent cancers is to know the risk factors.

Image courtesy

Image 2

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


She sits, the weight of the world lying on her shoulders

A heavy burden, crushing, the weight of boulders

Yet all pass as if she were not there

None willing to ask about the burden she bears.

Her eyes have ceased from all the crying

Now, she can only do all the caring

A sponge in hand, she gives him his daily bath

However little, she can only play her lowly part.

The part she plays seems insignificant

When compared to the Doctors skillful hands

Still, her watchful eyes never miss a detail

She can tell all that's done right to the slightest detail.

If you'd ask, she'll tell you how many drops form the IV fluid

And how many milligrams in the latest drug

She knows how many calories the doctor said

And exactly how to adjust the creaking bed.

Gladly, she would trade all that gain

For a chance to see him well again

But sadly, she has no choice but to continue to cope

All she can do is continue to hope.

Image courtesy

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


They stand in line, eyes upon each other

Eager for the course that would change them forever

Some are there out of a childhood dream

Some are there just to fulfil a parent's whim.

Some are there cos they always made good grades

Others cos nothing else made good sense

Unfortunately, this number would decrease

Sadly, some of these lofty dreams would cease.

Not out of disaster or unfortunate circumstance

But the simple effects of time and chance

It would decrease, cos along the way

The realities of life would begin to hold sway.

It would decrease when some volunteer to opt out

After considering what the journey is all about

It would decrease when some fail courses

Having realised life is not a bed of roses.

Of the few that get to the finish line

They realise, all too late its just the starting line

They are forced to make that decision they should have made 7 years ago -

Should I stay, or should I go?

Image Courtesy

Thursday, May 10, 2012


They met on the steps of the science faculty building

Both fresh from Highschool with dreams of a noble calling

Both knew they each felt a spark

They talked that day until it was dark.

They helped each other through the structures of Biochemistry

Strenghthened each other through the horrors of Anatomy

A ready shoulder through each failed examination

They looked forward to a time of celebration.

In the clinics, she admired how he bonded with the patients

He admired how her white coat made her look so radiant

They were a unique pair

The envy of their peers.

They faced many challenges together

Inseparable, no one could put them asunder

She fought off the young girls stealing his attention

He fought off the professors stealing her attention.

7 years went by like a passing dream

They made it, just like an Olympic team

Now, she's in his home, a married bliss

Dr and Dr Mrs, who wouldn't envy this?

Image Courtesy

Friday, April 27, 2012


Where is the Doctor?

The doctor won't be in today

He has gone away

Leaving his stethoscope and bag

Tossed in the trash like a rag.

Where is the Doctor?

He has gone to a foreign land

A land he will be hard to find

A land of milk and honey

A land of equal opportunity.

Why didn't he say goodbye?

Doesn't he realise we would all cry

Doesn't he realise some will even die

He must hate us so much

To have left in such a rush.

What did you say? I shouldn't have left?

I was there but you never saw me

Suffered long hours but you never thanked me

Nursed you but all you did was curse

You got well but all you did was fuss.

What did you say? I shouldn't have left?

But my brothers there you treat just the same

Everyday, they bow their heads in shame

Trying to survive with the little you give

They do their best to make your people live.



Wednesday, April 25, 2012


In a mixture of fluid, waste and debris we lived

Our nourishment-obtained from a common source, we shared

My legs on your head, your legs on my head

So we made our bed.

You came out first-I watched, considered, then stepped out after

To the embrace of welcoming hands, applause and laughter

There was no way to tell us apart

We both grew to be handsome,funny and smart.

Inseparable, we shared all things

At school, we shared all friends

At home, we both played pranks

One cannot easily forget mother's spanks.

And now, you've suddenly become pale

Looking tired, your face has started to swell

Scared, we take you to the hospital

Never knew a kidney could fail.

Suddenly you need a transplant

I am the most obvious donor but I can't

Because my tests have come out too

And now, we share this too.

Addenda: Based on the twins who both had end stage kidney failure whose mother had a kidney cyst.
Are you aware of what conditions lie in your genes?

Image Courtesy

Sunday, April 22, 2012


You cannot leave this place without getting a badge

Though it may be small, medium, or large

It is that symbol of the battle you so valiantly fought

The battle you never forgot.

The battle between sickness and health

Highlighting the various ravages your body has been dealt

The battle between life and death

A recurring story upon the earth.

The battle field is strewn with all kinds of matter

Blood and various fluids all flow freely after

However through all these the badge stays on

Through all these the badge stays strong.

At the end of the battle the badge is removed

You either walk out of the field or you are removed

All that remains is a memory of where the badge had been

A wish not to again go through what the eyes have seen.

Image 1

Monday, April 16, 2012


A jolly day, walking with your umbrella in your hand

Suddenly, you find your umbrella on the sand

You wonder if you've just been had by a crook

It's no crook dear sir, you're just having a stroke.

Talking to your family, you try to utter a word

Though excited, you find your speech is slurred

They all laugh trying to join in the joke

It's no joke dear sir, you're having a stroke.

Walking to the bathroom , you suddenly fall

Unable to move forward or utter a call

You lie wondering on the floor made of oak

It's no mystery dear sir, you're having a stroke.

Smiling in the mirror one day, you're feeling glad

You can't help but notice your mouth is bent to the side

As you contemplate this new interesting look

You may want to know dear sir, you're having a stroke.

Image Courtesy

Addenda:The above include Signs and Symptoms of a stroke.
Actually had a patient who suddenly could not hold his umbrella. A number of stroke patients I've seen usually have it while on their way to the bathroom (I can't say why).

Sunday, April 8, 2012


I cried when I heard you were in the hospital

The news on my heart was a heavy toll

A thousand and one thoughts passing through my mind

I had no idea what I would find.

I was shocked by the scene my eyes did meet

This couldn't possibly be you draped in a sheet

This couldn't be you being wheeled down the corridor

Attached to a tube and a monitor.

I thought I would meet her nursing you back to health

By your side constantly asking how you felt

she who you laboured and built your world around

was now absolutely nowhere to be found.

I still remember the day of your wedding

How you laughed and danced around the garden

The smile on your face as you greeted everyone

Who would have thought you would now be alone.

Now the doctor wants to speak with the family

I call her up so she can accompany me

He tells us the news we fear to hear

As I console her, I notice her ring finger is bare.

Image Courtesy

Thursday, April 5, 2012


Mop, Mop

Sweep, sweep

Sweep the dust from off the feet

feet running, not knowing the sight they will meet.

They just heard their friend was brought in from the street.

Mop, Mop

Sweep, sweep

Wipe the tears from off the chair

The tears of she who just lost her dear

The tears of one with a burden of three to bear.

Mop, mop

Sweep, sweep

Mop the saliva off the floor

From he with a stroke at just forty four

All his ambitions and dreams can't be anymore.

Mop, mop

Sweep, sweep

Sweep the slippers into the bin

He won't need it as he's leaving

He won't need it where he's going .

Mop, mop

Sweep, sweep

Wipe the sweat from off the wall

From the mom whose only son had a fall

Sweat for fear she would lose her all.

Mop, mop

Sweep, sweep

Doctors, nurses, don't even notice me

Walking, talking, they can't even see

Feeling important as they hurry off for tea.

Image 1,2,3,4,5

Sunday, April 1, 2012


An amazing thing happened in the hospital today

Something so unbelievable I must say

Something so unreal, it blows my mind away,

Nobody died in the hospital today.

As I tried to wrap my mind around that

I almost failed to observe another interesting fact

Something more incredible than the above by far,

Nobody was wheeled into the ER today.

An amazing scene met my eyes today

On a routine visit to the wards today

I met all the patients smiling and talking animatedly

Walking round, shaking hands excitedly.

What could be the cause of these amazing occurrences?

Could it somehow be due to our improved services?

I'm sure you would want to come and verify if what I say is true

But one last thing before you do...

(Written on April Fools day)

Image Courtesy

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


Dear Dad

You never taught me anything bad

But when you hid in the toilets

And smoked those cigarettes

Thinking I couldn't possibly smell them

Well you were wrong 'cos my little nostril picked them.

And whenever you smoke, I am smoking too.

Dear Driver

I know I have no say as this is your car

But as the air conditioner blows so fast

Reaching me sitted at the back

There's no need to seek my view

'Cos you already know the damage you do

For when you smoke, I am smoking too.

Dear co-worker

Always with your cigarette pack and lighter

With your office smelling like a tobacco factory

And your ash tray never empty

No need to ask why I'm coughing

'Cos truth be told, we've both been smoking.

As anytime you smoke, I am smoking too.

Dear Television star

I have always admired you from afar

As you roll the cigar and look cool

I long to do it just the way you do.

I really don't care if you light it or not

It doesn't matter if you like it or not

The only thing that matters is that like you, I am smoking too.

(Dangers of passive or second hand smoke almost equal to dangers of actual smoking.)

Image 1 Courtesy Image 2 Courtesy