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Incident form

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Poem submitted by Simon McKeown

This long, long day

Will remain with us for

Days, months, years

To come. Bound to.

No words can tell the way

I feel right now.

This long day,

This long, bitter-ending day.

Where was I

When she decided to do what she did?

Where were you three?

Where were we?

My heart is empty,

My soul clean (s)wept.

My colleagues pace and gaze at me,

Ageing seven years in forty minutes.

Written statement,

Incident form, report.

Nursing practice,

Loaded years ago,

Fires into action -


Take care of the living

And move out the way,

Secure the madder ones,

Wait for medics to arrive.

Blue everywhere, every kind of blue,

Machines, monitors, lights,

And shallow eyes, dead as I don’t want,

Just dead around this shell.

The blues scurry about,

Young doctors,

Older nurses in dark hue,

All know what to do.

Not angels but good people, fifteen in there now.

The bleeps, ‘phone on highest tension line,

The sound of breathing?

Corpse yet, or barely alive?

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