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Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Sthethoscope Poem

There was a young man in a boston town,

He bought him a stethoscope nice and new

All mounted and finished and polished down,

with an ivory cap and a stopper too.

It happened a spider within did crawl,

And spun him a web of ample size

Wherein there chanced one day to fall

A couple of very imprudent flies.

Now being from Paris but recently

This fine young man would show his skill.

And so they gave him his hand to try

A hospital patient extremely ill.

Then out his stethoscope he took

And on it placed his curious ear,

Mon Dieu! said he with a knowing look

Where here is a sound that's mighty queer


There is a empyema beyond a doubt,

We'll plunge a trocar in his side

The diagnosis was made out-

They tapped the patient ;so he died.

Then six young damsels,slight & frail,

Received this kind young doctor's care

They all were getting slim and pale,

And short of breath on mounting stairs.

They all made rhymes with ''sighs" and "skies"

And loathed their puddings and buttered rolls,

And dieted much to their friends surprise,

On pickles and pencils and chalks and coals.

So fast their hearts did bound,

That frightened insects buzzed more;

So over all their chest he found,

The rale siffilant and rale sonore

He shook his Head.

There's Grave's disease,-

I greatly fear you all must die;

A slight postmortem,and if you please,

Surving friend would gratify.

The six young damsels wept aloud.

which so prevailed on six young men.

That each his honest love avowed,

where they all got well again.

This poor young man was all aghast;

The price of stethoscope came down;

And so he was reduced at last,

To practice in a country town.

Now use your ears,all that you can,

But don't forget to mind your eyes.

Or you may be cheated, like this young man.

By a couple of silly,abnormal,flies.

By Oliver Wendell Holmes- An American physician & Poet Harvard Medical School.