The Diabetes Disaster

By | 14 January, 2011
William Topaz McGonagall, some years ago

William Topaz McGonagall, some years ago

If ever you have a spare minute I would highly recommend writing a poem about your diagnosis of diabetes in the style of William Topaz McGonagall. While some think he’s Scotland’s worst ever published poet, McGonagall’s work is still in print 109 years after his death. Take that proper poets! Anyway, if you fancy more McGonagall then a good starting point is the world famous Tay Bridge Disaster and a personal favourite is Edinburgh.

Anyway, as you know your soaraway Shoot Up is a very cultured place to may I present my own personal tribute to the great man, my poem The Diabetes Disaster:

‘Twas the dreadful year of two thousand and five
When once bonnie Timothy found his health did dive
He lost plenty of weight and his face was aglow
And he was drinking so much water that he was filled with woe

“This really can’t be right!” poor wretched Timothy cried
“Some medical advice must surely be applied”
So off he went with a dark and worried brow
To the doctor as fast as his legs would allow

The doctor’s surgery was lovely to see
With green potted plants and delightful shrubbery
But poor Tim waited and was seen by the doc
And out he walked with something like shell shock
For poor Timothy had with diabetes been diagnosed
And white went his face, just like a ghost.

So up to the Royal Infirmary poor Timothy did stride
But he was feeling so disheartened he nearly cried
Yet “do not worry” said the nice DSN
“We’ll fix you up satisfactorily with some insulin”

So without pause for thoughts or circumspections
Timothy did the next day start on injections
“Hurrah!” he cried, for better he did feel
And before long his dry skin did start to heal
His appetite returned and he ate plenty of veal
Which, despite the cruelty, he did with some zeal.

Years have passed since Tim’s diagnosis
And he now treats his diabetes without much neurosis
He tries his very best to maintain a wholesome A1C
To ensure that in future he won’t be an amputee
And his bonnie DSN with this does not disagree.

Yet despite his good management of this disease
Timothy prefers to stay away from foods such as cheese
He prefers foods with a low glycaemic load
This to avoid his blood glucose being caused to implode

So the dreadful year of two thousand and five
Shall be remembered for as long as Tim is alive
But hopefully bonnie young Tim will continue to thrive
Remember that God helps those that help themselves
And those that don’t try to do so are silly elves.

(Note: the last two lines are lifted directly from The Collision in the English Channel – sorry William)

Category: Mildly amusing Tags:

About Tim

Diagnosed with Type One when he was 28, Tim founded Shoot Up in 2009. For the diabetes geeks, he wears a Medtronic 640G insulin pump filled with Humalog and uses Abbott's Libre flash glucose monitor.

14 thoughts on “The Diabetes Disaster

  1. Alison

    Tim, I’m sure they’ll be teaching this as part of the English A-level syllabus in no time.

  2. Mike

    Good work, I see you have a quie day at the office! 【ツ】

  3. Tim Post author

    Donald – that would be ace. In fact, I think it’s what the world has been waiting for since crawling out of the primaeval soup – the very pinnacle of civilisation. Or am I bigging it up a little too much?

  4. lizz

    Lol. Well. you do know some ‘proper’ poets are still being read don’t you? I hope. Being a proper poet. Which I am sure you could be, were it not for the fact you are having to work with words like insulin and diagnosis. Very hard to rhyme. Which is another reason why I have never ventured into writing poetry on diabetes. I prefer words like light.
    I didn’t know his second name was Topaz! I want to be called that!

  5. Tim Post author

    @lizz – Insulin *is* indeed bloody difficult to rhyme! Hence Topaz loving words like “green” and “seen” –

    Edinburgh with your shrubberies green
    Are the loveliest to be be seen

    Cracking stuff!

  6. Annette A

    I do not remember the fateful day
    The doctor called my mother to say
    Take your child, sickness and all
    She has diabetes, insulin calls.

  7. Tim Post author

    Careful now – let’s not stray into limerick territory again here…

  8. Cecile

    @tim: Now you’re talking!

    A self-diagnostic blunder
    From doctors kept me asunder…
    The thirst got gallons
    And the itch, some talons;
    Comatose to my fate I did “wander”*.

    *on a stretcher

    Re “His appetite returned…”: Did yours go away? With the amount of sweets I devoured prior to diagnosis, you could’ve catered for all the Rosenkowitz-sextuplet’s childhood parties 🙂 …and I lost 10kg of “veal” in the process!

  9. Tim Post author

    The “appetite returning” thing was merely for the rhyme rather than anything accurate. The poem does in fact contain other inaccuracies. For example, I didn’t walk from the doctor’s surgery to the Royal Infirmary – I took the bus.

  10. Cecile

    @tim: Phew! Good to know we can gobble up your false verbal offerings like sweetener…so you’re not really a caseophobe either (remembering previous mention of camembert overdose) 😉 ?


Speak your brains