“Machin Road, B23” — New Verse.

I played in this pocket playground as a small child.

Machin Road, B23

Tarmac square, lifeless
Dull as ditchwater,
Laid out there
Blot on the landscape.
Sterile, barren, devoid.

Dust and sand kicked up
By little feet. Laughter
Ringing through wooden menagerie.
Children scramble, clamber excitedly.
Playing, acting out other lives.

Plot of land, corner of suburbia,
Pound, playground, car park now.
Tomorrow, next year, next decade
Who knows? Deader still,
Soundless still, no such thing
As childhood now.

Ben A Harvey

October 2018

(c) Gogwit’s Blog, all rights reserved.

New exhibition open: Doctor says relax

I reblog this piece because it describes something which is not often considered beyond a relatively small circle. It is also pleasing to read of one of my heroes, Charles Waterton. Please do read this and other posts on their blog. Who knows, you too may get hooked on anaesthetics; in a benign way, of course.

Association of anaesthetists heritage centre

The Amazonian arrow poison that revolutionised Anaesthesia

The Anaesthesia Heritage Centre has opened a new temporary exhibition on muscle relaxants. It showcases authentic curare weapons alongside anaesthetic equipment to tell the history of muscle relaxants in the practice of anaesthesia.

Curare is a deadly poison found in the Amazonian Basin of South America. When injected into the bloodstream it acts as a muscle relaxant which paralyses and asphyxiates prey.

Atalaia du Norde, Amazonia / Brazil - FEB 02 2016:Tribal elder Binan Tukum hunting with his son for monkeys in the rainforest

[TRIBAL ELDER BINAN TUKUM HUNTING WITH HIS SON FOR MONKEYS IN THE RAINFOREST. COPYRIGHT LAZLO MATES]

Curare was the first muscle relaxant (or neuro-muscular blocking agent) to be introduced into western medicine. It revolutionised the practice of anaesthesia and allowed life saving operations, which were previously considered too dangerous, to be performed for the first time.

South American tribes will shoot curare coated darts or arrows from blow pipes and bows to kill or stun animals for food and…

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