Let me not be tempted
to talk incessantly about my illnesses;
the love of rehearsing them has become too sweet.
And more importantly
let others not be tempted
to talk in intimate details about theirs.
Let us not be led
into the comparing of tablets, sizes, shapes, colours
how many, how often and for how long.
Let us not tell
how shocked the doctor was
when he saw whatever it was he saw.
Let us not go
into minute details
about the prescribing of ointments, injections, bandages.
Let us not discuss
what the consultant said
nor how long we waited to see him.
Finally, when others ask,
even though we’re dying to tell them,
let us have the strength
to say, ‘I’m just fine’.