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Unread 07-25-2017, 08:27 AM
Jan D. Hodge Jan D. Hodge is offline
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Sioux City, IA
Posts: 905

Or Byron's epitaph for Castlereagh:

Posterity will ne'er survey
A nobler grave than this:
Here lie the bones of Castlereagh:
Stop, traveller, and piss.
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Unread 07-25-2017, 07:20 PM
RCL's Avatar
RCL RCL is offline
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 5,851

You think you're depressed?

This one's off to the funny papers!

Last edited by RCL; 08-02-2017 at 07:45 PM.
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Unread 01-12-2021, 10:11 PM
Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Seattle
Posts: 2,626

Poem on reading an old thread

So many Posters who once Posted
are vanished—permabanned or ghosted;
the small remainder—once such friends—
Post now with heads lodged in their ends.
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Unread 01-13-2021, 11:54 PM
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Quincy Lehr Quincy Lehr is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Los Angeles, CA, USA
Posts: 5,461

The poem at the top is lots of fun,
considering that the good guys won.
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Unread 01-14-2021, 03:07 PM
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Jane Crowson Jane Crowson is offline
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: UK
Posts: 351

I have just realised that this thread is really old (sorry). But it felt like an evening for making quickfire images without worrying about quality, so here's my depressing poem anyway:
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Unread 01-15-2021, 07:28 AM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 2,888

Sarah Jane, works for me : ) Gazing down and out at the sea at night from the railing of a boat always sinks me... (Sometimes I ride the night ferry from Nantucket to Cape Cod.)

This thread is back on the radar screen so I quickly wrote this:

Died again today. Twice.
Yesterday too. Black ice
hole comes to get you.
No tomorrow never comes.

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Unread 01-25-2021, 02:15 PM
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Mario Pita Mario Pita is offline
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Arlington, MA
Posts: 413

Mind Chasm

When life looks drained of meaning it once had
and emptied of the joys that filled it once
and hollowed of its good to leave just bad,
and I who felt so wise turned out a dunce;
When flesh feels stripped of soul and left a shell,
and memories are scraped as residue
of back when life felt scrumptious for a spell,
I wonder, feeling barren, what to do.
Like aging eyes see less well, so my brain’s
a culprit as its vision has turned blurred,
so lofty feelings that had poured like rains
dried up, and I feel like a flightless bird.
It seems to be a punishment for sin.
The doctor, though, says, “Take your medicine.”
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Unread 01-25-2021, 09:56 PM
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Posts: 7,129

Marfan Syndrome Blues

“With careful management,” the pamphlet cheers,
“most Marfanoids now live past forty years.”
I’m forty-five. Just lucky, it appears.

One blissful hour ago, I had no clue
my death was half a decade overdue.
And now I know I’ve cursed my children, too.

A verse of Larkin’s writhes within my head,
throwing sparks, the way my wayward thread
of DNA will zap my daughters dead.

Lightning-strikes of stretch-marks brand them mine.
They’ve both received my thunderbolt of spine
(a back-and-forth-and-sideways serpentine),

the jaw I can dislocate like a snake,
and limbs so hyper-flexible, they make
the double-jointed do a double take.

I gave my girls my maloccluded grin;
my skeletal demeanor, long and thin;
arachnodactyly; transparent skin;

and now, I’ve learned, perhaps a fatal flaw
in the aorta. Even with my jaw
unhinged, the news is sticking in my craw.

Why has no one spotted this before?
Among the three of us, we’ve seen a score
of specialists. Today’s was just one more,

who’s broken what our camelbacks entail,
and said the woes we’d thought were weasel-scale
amount to something very like a whale.


When I throw a self-pity party, I do a thorough job, don't I?

Turns out we don't have Marfan Syndrome. It's Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. Hooray for easily-disjointed limbs and for chronic, debilitating pain, rather than our aortas ripping at an inopportune moment and killing us within about four minutes. But I didn't know that when I wrote this seven years ago, shortly after my elder daughter's heart transplant (for a different set of genetic defects), when I finally had time to focus on my younger daughter's somewhat less catastrophic medical weirdnesses, some of which I seem to have given to both of them.

The poem alludes to Philip Larkin’s “This Be the Verse” (which begins, “They fuck you up, your mom and dad. / They do not mean to, but they do.”), and also to this passage of William Shakespeare’s

HAMLET: Do you see yonder cloud that’s almost in shape of a camel?
POLONIUS: By the mass, and ’tis like a camel.
HAMLET: Methinks it is like a weasel.
POLONIUS: It is backed like a weasel.
HAMLET: Or like a whale?
POLONIUS: Very like a whale.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 01-26-2021 at 09:00 AM.
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Unread 01-26-2021, 10:01 AM
Mario Pita's Avatar
Mario Pita Mario Pita is offline
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Arlington, MA
Posts: 413

I'm sorry your family is going through this and hope that you will all leave the doctors with jaws agape in awe at how you all avoid all but the mildest symptoms throughout your lengthy, healthy lives.
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Unread 01-26-2021, 10:33 AM
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Posts: 7,129


I mean, thanks, Mario! Your good wishes are much appreciated.

Update: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome in the news.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 04-04-2021 at 07:43 PM.
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