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Wednesday, 25 September 2013


At bed clothes.
Stark remains
of hope, life,
What once was upright, beautiful –
pillar of society –
reduced, defeated upon her
pillow of death.

            Amidst her laboured rise to the
            pinnacle of career, perhaps she
            paused, lamented the
            passing of routine to
            uphold the greater good?

They say they called –
a distant ring –   
dull echoes to mark her
piss-soaked passing.
Shadows creep,
envelop tears and
frail fingers

            at straws,
            ignore their threats and
            soldier on – steadfast, strong-willed –
            perhaps she’ll change

Three rings herald the hope of death.
Three shots mark the death of hope.

©Carolyn Cornthwaite

Carolyn writes poetry and fiction and blogs at She has just finished the first draft of a novel and is slowly recovering. Next time she will write an uplifting tale with a joyous ending.


  1. Hi Carolyn,
    What a powerful and moving piece - what an inditment of our system of care!

  2. Really well written and yes very moving

  3. Thank you everyone for your kind comments. Both stories affected me and I was struck by the tensions and ironies inherent in reading such stories - the atrocities of Afghanistan where success (for women at least) is regularly fatal and then the travesty that in Britain the elderly can be left to starve to death.