This poem is part of the Poems for doctors project. You can find out more about the project here.

Season 2 : poem 3

Consultant Neurologist Prof John Zajicek reads Multiple Sclerosis by Cynthia Huntington

Multiple Sclerosis

Cynthia Huntington

For ten years I would not say the name.
I said: episode. Said: setback, incident,
exacerbation—anything but be specific
in the way this is specific, not a theory
or description, but a diagnosis.
I said: muscle, weakness, numbness, fatigue.
I said vertigo, neuritis, lesion, spasm.
Remission. Progression. Recurrence. Deficit.

But the name, the ugly sound of it, I refused.
There are two words. The last one means: scarring.
It means what grows hard, and cannot be repaired.
The first one means: repeating, or myriad,
consisting of many parts, increasing in number,
happening over and over, without end.

Rights: by permission of Four Way Books

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