This is not a poetry post but a Thank you

Today on the birthday of the NHS, it’s made me sit back and see exactly how much I’ve needed and used the NHS over my almost 50 years.

I’m not going to say I recall being born in an NHS hospital, though I was. My first proper memory was the NHS making something not done then possible. I was 11. My Grandad who was heroic to me, was in hospital. As was the case then, nobody said the word death to a child. Children didn’t visit hospitals, especially the dying, or go to funerals.

I’d picked up from conversations he wasn’t coming back. I needed to see. So I didn’t go to school. I went straight to the hospital. He demanded they allow me in. We talked, laughed, said our goodbyes. The nurses were fantastic, but without their agreement I’d never have said goodbye. In fact, I’m crying as I recall it today.

My next thing was finding out I am epileptic. I was 13 and I suddenly had a seizure in my bedroom. From then until I was roughly 18, I was mostly OK. I’d just started to see a fantastic neurologist, and the morning after my birthday, I was rushed into hospital. I’d been prescribed a wrong tablet dose. A mistake no doubt, from an underpaid overworked junior doctor. I was 10x overdosed. I was chuntering about leaving as my mum entered my room and the ambulance arrived after the doctor literally ran across from the surgery. I was lucky. Thanks to the NHS and their speed and care.

I was in hospital week in, week out for a long while and I’m talking years.

Then a good few years where I tried not to bother them!

They took care of me through pregnancy and then during post natal depression and depression.

I saw my dad having a spell in hospital after 5 heart bypasses when he thought he was having a double. It was just business as usual, we’re going to tell you everything. I can’t praise the staff more. My Dad has now sadly passed away, but we had him for many more years than would have been possible without these wonderful people. The people who care, in every sense. They understand how the patients feel and they’re there .

I’ve lost many family members over the years, as have we all. But if we were without the NHS, our NHS, I ask a simple question. How many of us would actually be here? Medicine doesn’t come cheap, hospital care is not cheap, and seriously having been on the nursing side, though not a nurse, I know how devastating losing a patient can be. How those people are taken home in worries and not forgotten about.

For all this and so much more. Thank you NHS. Happy Birthday NHS and here’s to many, many more.

Plated

Stepping forth in her armour she felt invincible

Her resolve not to be broken

The looks on their faces were shocked

Astonished at her audacity

That she’d not done what was expected

Her face cleared of the usual paint

Sleek hair left to be wild and exuberant

Suddenly in her nakedness she felt it

Powerful, in control

Their shock at her being as she wanted

Scared them

No heels, paint, sleek dress just her

Armour plated by being naked

She stared them down when they demanded

Smile pretty lady it’s not the end of the world

Yeah? She replied it is.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry2020

The world he’s locked in

His stories are those of a person persuaded

That life has passed him by

People crushing his spirit and grinding

Their heels into his head

Because he isn’t what was expected.

So he chooses the path of least resistance

Pressing a button that destroys his world

Because he’s afraid of losing happiness

Fighting it from happening is easier

Than the disappointment as it walks away.

He’s tired of hiding behind the shell of pretence

That he’s so carefully constructed

To show the world the clown who loses

But it’s there flickering , the light

That’s now refusing to be extinguished

Now he knows some people believe in him.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry2020

Promise the North

Let’s look at the North frozen wastelands

Win them over boys again.

Tell the same stories, change the words

Dangle carrots full of powerful pain.

Yes, I know we told them that last year

Also probably the one before

Saying we’d give them help

It’s the North, they only settle scores.

Subdue, substitute and ignore

All we’ve ever done to the place

We’ll keep our powerhouse for us

Tell them it’s impossible, save our face.

Forget it now, this promise to the North

All they do is march, pour forth

Didn’t go to our old chaps schools

They can’t see we’re a ship of fools.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Differ and change

Undercurrent flows into conversation

A bitter edge that says you’re not better

Yet I never said I was

How do you explain it?

That you just need to see what else there is

Know what other choices there are

Make decisions without fear of

The failure that surely follows

If you dare to change

And allow Times mist to swirl around

Carrying you with them to new things.

If you’re happy where you are I’m happy

For you are living your plans

As I am

Neither of us better or best

Just different and happy with our choice

So we shall have to beg to differ

And I will follow my change.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Queen of arrows

She sits there like a queen on her throne

Sceptre a fag hanging down

Flicking ash she makes her choice

Of which horse is worth the money

Not a gamble, it’s a definite winner

Mind you, she’s usually right

Her arrow throwing hand would’ve made her

A formidable opponent in war

These days she’s making sure that in the corner

They’re not messing up her score

As she hits the board to win the darts

Knowing once more she’s nailed it.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Fireside secrets

Listen girl keep looking you’d say

Watch that fire flicker with dreams

See pictures of life cross it

And swallow the future whole.

Tell yourself you can see and you will

Shadows of orange flame become futures

Worlds of opportunity open to you

If you only believe they are.

I’m not talking magic or hocus pocus

My words are meant to convey

The simple life you can make

If you should need to escape.

The rat runs here no more comfort

Than the days when I was small

Well, in some ways it is but really

I’m only saying why have the same

When you could have it all?

Written about conversations with my nana as a child

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Broken man

A broken man skeletal but proud

Walks in daring anyone

To mention his weight loss

Haunted face deathly gaunt

Knowing each day brings him closer

To the end.

He knows what is happening

Will tell you after a drink

Wants no sympathy, fact dealing

So there’s not speculation

As he hears them discuss him

Talk about the ‘condition ‘

Coming to take the life he knew

Your words are not accurate

This thing filled him with stoicism

While eating away who he was

Wanting to tell them while asbestos eats

He can still hear every single beat.

Written about the close friend of my dad who was a fighter and battled asbestosis, a very brave man even as he was being broken down.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Pushing

Try pushing, cajoling

Screaming and wails

Hurl insults like boulders

To get through the day.

Try threats coated in treacle

Not subtle or sweet

You’ll wait till I’m ready

I bow at nobody’s feet.

Watch through cracks in the story

Make your own fairytale end

I can see through your mask

Don’t break and don’t bend.

I may say little to you but read

You so well

I’m wary not scared

You are but a shell.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2018

Cutting deep

Hailing down upon me the words cut

Deeper than any knife and I’d rather

The blows you threatened happen

Bruises I can heal and then they’re gone

Words are far sharper weapons

Cutting deep

You don the superior spitting face

Hurling untruths that matter not if I defend

Myself or agree, your mind made up.

As I trip backwards on the stairs

Land a few feet down with your face

Cutting deep

And you speak in hushed tones of my

Misdeeds that I half wish I’d done

To say I lead a life off the leash

An invisible chain that makes me start

If a single wrong word is uttered you’ll

Cut deep

So long you did that to me

Telling everyone that could hear

What a terrible person I was to you

How badly you were done to

And I see you now and think I escaped

I escaped

No more cutting deep

That wound is there running deep

Almost healed to surface scar tissue

No more cutting deep a helpless person

A woman who loved you once

Even the monster who wounded

You cannot love have to control every little

Bit of someone else but I know you’re not

Going to cut me ever again

Never again would you be trusted not to

Try and cut me deep

After sweet words and tearful apologies

Your method is always cutting deep.

Ailsa

©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2018