Saturday, 22 February 2014

Fighting Alligators

The old adage; ‘when you are up to your arse in alligators; it’s difficult to remember that your intent was to drain the swamp’, is so true of living with CRPS.

Whichever form of treatment you prescribe to, there are side effects. All too often it feels like your sole purpose is to fight, not to win but just to slow the inevitable decline.

This poem is born from such feelings, I hope you like it.

Fighting Alligators

Drip, splat. Drip, splat,
droplets begin to merge,
a thin film forms.
Drip, splash,
now it has volume
still the rain falls.
The depth increases,
slowly, relentlessly,
I’m buoyed from the floor,
forced to tread water
in the filthy mire.
The swamp deepens,
it fills with claws and teeth.
I'm forced to fend off alligators
while the rain falls.
Claws rip, teeth gnash
the fight drags on.
Resolve, strength, my very soul,
sapped- by the incessant onslaught.
I begin to flounder,
every ounce of strength
expended in a fruitless struggle
to stay afloat, to fight alligators.
Each scintilla squandered
just to experience the languid
dismemberment of body and soul.
What's the point?
Stop kicking.

John Carré Buchanan
21 February 2014


  1. You're right about the side effects John. At one point I was taking so many different pills that I had to have another pill to take away the side effects of the previous pills. Sometimes it feels like you're in a tail spin until you find the right combination of pills/treatments that can help.

    I like your poem too, but don't stop kicking as there is a point. Hope you have a nice weekend John.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment. Having decided to stop taking all drugs, it is important to note that even being drug free has side effects. At the end of the day opiates do reduce pain, and antidepressants do help with aspects of depression, by taking them out of the equation life is more painful and depression is always close by. The benefits a little more brain power..... Sometimes;-)


I really appreciate constructive feedback. If you are able to comment it would be most grateful.