The theme this week for Jon’s JVG Radio Method on 3RRR is “Open“. Ed Bates is responsible for the background sounds.

Click to hear today’s poem… [audio:JVG_Poem20080928.mp3]


Open

“To open press 4739#. When light comes on push door firmly and close behind you”

The corridor holds no clues – orderly, clean, white paint yellowing with age
Windows wed to ornamental grates disguise the fact this is a cage
A distant guttural cry – Despair? Pain? Sorrow? Rage?
I have no idea

The day room, modest, cheerful, bright, a cat sleeps curled on a walking frame
Goldfish swim purposefully round their bowl – an endless journey to whence they came
Urine and disinfectant blend, to create a sweet and sour pervasive scent
A butterfly mobile violently lurches, tethered to the air-conditioning vent

Television, the sound turned off, a flickering distraction but no panacea
Dr Phil gives council to the damaged and aggrieved, though mute, he’s the only doctor here

The rooms, like cells, simple, sterile, a bed, a table, a vinyl chair
A husband strokes his darling’s hand, a wife combs and parts her husband’s hair
While others fade away alone with none but carers paid to care

Oblivious, a vacant gaze responds to neither touch nor voice
Detached from all that was – from all that is, from reason and from choice
And then an ember flickers – awareness sparked by will, innate
And cruelly draws them back just long enough to realise the horror of their fate

The torment of the drowning, a nightmare strikes to shatter sleep
Frustration melds with fear and anguish, in helplessness and hopelessness – they weep
Till swept away once more, returning to the arms of a calm and silent deep

The sacrifice of those who love and care, so overwhelming it transforms and transcends belief
Though many find excuses to turn away, leaving others to be their conscience and bear their grief

But THEY are us, WE are them, until distanced from the illusion we have built
To Happyville and Sunnyvale, and other names to appease our fears and guilt

Carefully relocated, reassessed, restructured, reviewed, repackaged, relabelled
Proof, if proof was ever needed, we’re all demented, deluded and disabled

God the Father or Mother Nature? Cruelty evolved or cruelty divine?
Yet another flaw in the human condition? Or not so intelligent, intelligent design?

“To Exit press 4739#. Please ensure the door is closed securely behind you. Thank you for your co-operation.

© Copyright 2008 Ian Bland

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