Oliver: A Suvior’s Poem

Oliver Swingler generously shared his powerful shock story with with me many months back. You can find that here here.

This is another piece of his work relating to his experience with electroshock.

ELECTRO-CONVULSIVE THERAPY

Elephants don’t arrange to have memories wiped out
Larks don’t sing tunes that awaken chronic doubt
Electric eels don’t give shocks to others of their kind
Cheetahs don’t advise speedy cures that damage the mind
Tortoises don’t punish those who are a bit slower
Reindeer don’t stigmatise whatever they see as lower
Owls don’t manufacture darkness for hunting their prey
Crocodiles don’t submerge animals in terror for pay
Oysters don’t clam up if treatment is put to the test
Nightingales don’t wilfully disturb other creatures’ rest
Voles don’t produce the dependence on hibernation
Unicorns don’t pretend what’s real is an invention
Locusts don’t strip bare while announcing that it’s healing
Spiders don’t weave to confuse other spiders’ feeling
Iguana don’t make ugly innocent hope and belief
Vultures don’t pick at the bones of those suffering grief
Earthworms don’t aim to undermine the vulnerable naïve
Tigers don’t lurk behind caring postures that deceive
Hornets don’t sting to sell results in published research
Eagles don’t use old, weak ones to establish their perch
Rattlesnakes don’t have hidden agendas that cause fear
Ants don’t build nests that alienate every ant near
Psychiatrists and their drugs often do – they’ve done it to me
You may be the next to be raped by ECT

Oliver Swingler
October 2000

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