Not A-verse to Suicide…

  • Trigger Warning: this post is about what it says in the title…220px-Stephen_Fry_cropped
  1. Suicide is in the British news because celebrity Stephen Fry has gone public about trying to take his own life last year.  He has long been a mentalists champion (at least in BiPd circles) since he presented a TV documentary on BiPolar Disorder.  [Some of us have wondered when he fits in time to be non-function-ally high or low??]
  2. (see Glossary Category post)
  3. I’ve been a fan of Stephen Fry’s acting & presenting for decades; his portrayal of a GP in Ben Elton’s series ‘Happy Families’ (with Jennifer Saunders) has stuck in my mind: he would ask always of his patient, “Tickety-boo, or not-so-pucker?”  So, I’m sorry to know that SF ‘was not T-B, was N-S-P’ last year.  I’m in favour of S Fry Esq being known, as he is, a National Treasure: if he did succeed in ‘giving his lifeline the chop’ then I would definitely miss his witty, erudite televisual and filmic presence…
  • As someone who has more-than-once attempted to self-euthanase, I feel I am in the position to have some take on the subject; as the titles of this post – and of my poem below – suggest, I neither encourage, condone nor deplore suicide.  I certainly root for euthanasia and wish that GB offered the like of the Swiss Dignitas service.
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dignitas_(assisted_dying_organisation)
  • [On the subject of Swiss, I gained a disappointing ‘D’ in my French ‘A’ Level Oral exam due to the fact that my examiner got me talking about my other expectedly-low-achieving exam subject, Sociology.  Inappropriately – as well as unintelligibly, me thinks – I was asked something about (please read with French accent) ‘suicide’… I, however, having only muddle-studied Family & Kinship in East London, thought I was being asked about similar F&K in a Swiss conurbation community…  Life & Death move in surreally mysterious ways…]
    • Teule Suicide shop
    • Living with BiPd Level II, I learned recently that I am statistically more likely than those  with the more demonstative highs and lows of BiPD Level I to make attempt(s) to take my life; certainly I have lived with suicidal ideation for more than forty years since puberty (a fact that, paradoxically, gives clout to the Gender Clinic consultants of the reality of my A-gendered dysphoria as a Trans* Person…)
    • Quite coincidentally, I found in the city centre library last week a fabulously funny novelette;
    • translated from the French, by author Jean Teulé: The Suicide Shop (‘A gently comic fable’ – Financial Times; ‘A suicide shop that is full of life…’ – Le figaro).
    • I honestly don’t know if I’d have stomached reading it if I was in a low space, but presently it has me laugh-out-loud on the bus!  I highly recommend that you reserve at your local library or bookstore (as oppose to ordering online from some tax-dodge-corporation) this life-affirming read.
    • In Brighton, the Grassroots Suicide Prevention organisation tries to normalise this taboo subject as a means to lowering the high incidence in this urban-by-the-sea population.   So, I too, create(d) this post and poem as a taboo-breaking ‘let’s talk about suicide’ offering (the poem was written in the late ’90s).


See also the Campaign Against Living Miserably – the CALM Zone



Not Averse to Suicide

There’s some person all over-the-shop
who wants to give their lifeline the chop;
they think “Rat poison’s got clout,
but setting fire-to-self’s out,
and I don’t fancy the ten storey drop.

I could paint death’s bed a wrist-slash-red;
but trigger a sawn-off up at my head?
You can stuff anorexic!
The bleedin’ oven’s electric…
So, is it hair dryer in the bath instead?”

Goes way back, when this lover they’d greet:
they had let Death in the bridal suite.
“See, I’m married to Life,
but I’m not a true ‘wife’,
and a divorce looks right up my street.”

Yes, for them, life’s a role of the dice;
their mental states in skates on thin ice.
“Some S.A.D. day I could crack,
shoot a death-pull of smack…”
Yet there’s no joy in this gambler’s vice.

And the short overdose is the scare.
“It could leave me hangin’ in mid-air…
So is the noose-on-the-loose –
while I’ve still got some ‘juice?”
We hope/guess/doubt they’ll keep hangin’ on in there…

©  Luc(e) Raesmith

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