After posting my poem yesterday on ‘Pain’, I have been humbled to read more posts of people who suffer with daily, soul-grinding pain. Their remarkable fortitude and spirit leaves me ashamed at what I had but only glimpsed. I truly can only imagine what they suffer on a daily basis and I, for one, hope to look beyond the visible to see more clearly what is not always evident. I doff my hat to all who cope with ongoing suffering. For old friends and new.
Entrails ripped, innards exposed.
I see your hurt. You’re gory.
But intact body, stood up straight?
Well, that’s a different story.
You appear to be quite rational,
Your faculties all there.
You’re surely not disabled?
I see no stick, no chair.
Chronic pain. What does that mean?
A constant, aching hurt?
Well, I’m sore too. Mine’s just as bad.
I’d bet you, shirt for shirt.
I stubbed my toe, my tooth it aches,
A wasp has stung my arm.
Of course, I hear you’re suffering.
I suffer, harm for harm.
‘Let’s swap your minor ailments.
I’ll trade you, tit for tat.
I’ll cope with throbbing headache
For some time. I’ll do that.
‘Before you take mine to yourself,
This warning I must say;
My pain is omnipresent,
It lives here night and day.
‘I’ll take the agony of birth,
I’ll take the gallstones too,
I’ll take what you can throw at me,
The breaks and falls and flu.
‘I’d trade the lot, I’d take your pain,
If mine would just depart,
For constant, daily suffering
Hurts body, mind and heart.
‘I won’t complain. I’ll bear it.
I’ll smile when I feel grim.
But open up your eyes, my dear,
And look at her and him.
‘Pain is not an entity
To be seen and to admire.
It’s invisible and treacherous,
Like garrotted throat by wire.
‘So, fill my cup with medicine,
Dull my avid brain,
Pollute my limbs with poison,
So I might not go insane.
‘It’s crazy how this hardship,
Cloaked by hidden means,
Eats through my corpus, Christ!
My pain invades my dreams.
‘I pray for inner healing.
For healing, too, without,
I pray for understanding,
So that others may not doubt.’