Image by Caroline Forbes

Poem introduction

My eldest brother is a doctor - I was a schoolboy when he was a medical student and one day he came back from working in the operating theatre in Cardiff when he was a dresser to a well-known brain surgeon by the name of Lambert Rogers. He came back as I say and told us a very strange story, a haunting story, and years passed and it still haunted me and eventually I put down what he said in this poem. You ought to know that brain surgery is done under a local anaesthetic - it was so since the First World War, this for blood pressure reasons. The operation in question took place in 1938 when they didn't have the scanning devices they now have which can pick out a lesion in the brain very cleverly, whereas in the past sometimes a surgeon, searching for the tumour or whatever it was, broke down more brain tissue than was necessary. 'In the theatre' - a true incident.

Take a tour

Mark Grist's tour

Over the years I’ve become increasingly interested in the lyrical nature of poetry. I find that the more I’ve taken in...

Take Mark Grist's tour >