• THE DAY MY HEAD EXPLODED

    I woke up with a headache quite late in the morning.
    It was something of a surprise, ‘cause I hadn’t been drinking the night before.
    I’d been sitting at home, feeling a bit bored.

    There was nothing to do
    and I didn't feel quite right,
    so I took myself to bed and had an early night.

    And then I woke with this pain behind my eyes, 
    like an incessant throbbing.
    I started sobbing,
    ‘cause I’m a bit of a wuss.
    I staggered to the mirror
    and my whole head was covered in puss.

    Then it started growing before my eyes,
    like a balloon being slowly inflated.

    I ran outside,
    while I could still squeeze my head through the front door.
    I legged it to the shop across the road
    and slid along the floor up to the counter.

    “Wow,” the bloke said,
    “You’ve got a really massive head!
    It’s like a big wobbly cyst.
    It’s not a newsagent you need, mate. I
    t’s a chemist.”

    I bought some Ibuprofen off him anyway,
    ‘cause it’s an anti-inflammatory.
    Then ran down the street to the nearest pharmacy.

    “Your head’s expanding,”
    said the chemist as I staggered in, 
    “I can’t help you.
    What you need is a doctor with a very sharp pin.”

    I groaned and ran outside.
    My head was now three foot wide.

    I made my way to my GP surgery
    as quickly as my head would let my legs carry me.
    I was living through the worst of my fears.
    Small children were looking at me and bursting into tears.

    I reached the waiting room
    not a moment too soon.
    Up to the counter I bravely strode,
    but the receptionist had all the social skills of a neglected commode.

    “You can’t have an appointment for today,” she said,
    “Expanding head or no expanding head.
    You should have rang us promptly at 8.30am.
    I can fit you in a week after Thursday next,
    at ten past six in the morning. It’s a popular slot,
    so don’t miss the appointment or you’ll be shot.
    You won’t see anyone before then at this surgery.
    Maybe you should go to A & E.”

    So I crowbarred my head outside, 
    resisted the urge to cry,
    pulled out my phone and called 999.

    Then I sat and waited for two hours
    on the side of the road.
    I wasn’t feeling any better.
    My head was now five feet in diameter,
    and my boils
    were oozing this cranial oil.
    I looked like a leaking alien.

    Then these paramedics rolled up
    and said “Alas and alack,
    we’ll never fit your head in the back.
    Our only course of action, if you approve,
    is to put you next to the lights on the roof
    and secure you up there with some sort of strap.”

    So they drove through the streets with me on board.
    The frost froze my head like a genital wart,
    but at least it stopped growing temporarily
    until we reached the entrance to A & E.

    They took me inside
    and told me to wait in line,
    where I was robustly ignored for a very long time.

    All the while my head kept growing.
    It started to make a creaking sound
    and there was no way of knowing
    when it was going to stop.
    I looked at the clock,

    And then a doctor appeared.
    He said “Hello. I’m a locum.
    I’ve been on duty for a very long time
    and I’ve no idea what I’m supposed to be doing.
    Now apparently you’ve got a head that won’t stop growing?”

    He doesn’t look up from his notes.
    He checks my pulse and says
    “Well that seems to be normal.
    I suggest you go home and take some paracetamol,
    and maybe have an early night,
    and if it’s no better in the morning, go and see your GP.
    Oh, and take Ibuprofen, ‘cause it is an anti-inflammatory."

    And then my head exploded.
    Everyone in the surrounding area was covered in blood, goo, teeth,
    chunks of cranium, embarrassing memories,
    long forgotten secrets, and bits of grey matter.

    The health-related posters on the wall
    were spattered with my innermost thoughts.
    An eyeball smacked into a nearby lady.
    I nearly drowned a newborn baby.

    The doctor took it personally.
    “Well,” he said, “That was antisocial.
    We have a zero tolerance policy towards exploding patients.
    Now you’ll have to vent your frustrations away from A and E,
    and in future, try to behave with a bit more dignity.”

    So now I’m back home in my flat,
    trying to grow a new head from scratch.
    It’s taken a while,
    But it’s starting to appear.
    I’m just waiting for the nose and a couple of ears.

    And you might want to accuse me of irrational optimism,
    but it might all be worth it if this one’s more handsome,
    and if it’s not,
    I’ll just make do with whatever I’ve got.

    And if this head expands at any juncture,
    I’ll just go straight for acupuncture.

    Rob Gee