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J R Soc Med. 2002 July; 95(7): 378.
PMCID: PMC1279958

The morning lecture

Ovoid semipellucid discerned discs are there, like frosted scales on a fish, with its skin stretched out enormously.

These, in the morning faces of alarmclock awakened students, their faces semisurrounding me, quasi-expectantly as if my words may stem some unconscious apparition of their past, resolve the memory of a dream or awaken some inkling of the future.

I have for hours been searching for the phrases, the way in which to convey to them how and why things should be distilled from the horrors of what I have seen what done, what not done, the tears, the memories of mistakes, and the rare triumphs for which God has acted and I have taken credit, and I know I cannot reach them, for it is certain that they must agonize alone along the way, as I have done, and reach the solutions by themselves.

And some of my listeners are sensing this, covering themselves with a veneer of concern, and others feel this as an unanticipated perception, and some few show incuriosity, and pathy— from adolescence and last night's partying or so I trust—

And I hope that, sometime before the inevitable blight of a catastrophe, someone else has forewarned them.

Articles from Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine are provided here courtesy of Royal Society of Medicine Press