My husband was sent a letter
At the age of fifty-five
Inviting him to have a colonoscopy.
This must be the call up age
For our brave boys
To have a camera stuffed up their bums.
The hardy doctors inspecting for polyps
Or other anomalies living within.
Although a choice, and not a nice thing,
It seemed churlish not to accept.
So an appointment was made
And preparations begun.
Firstly a dressing gown had to be purchased
And slippers of which he had neither
But walking through the corridors naked
Was something we agreed may be discouraged.
The week before a present arrived
A large enema to clear the bowels
I offered to administer this
However he felt the remaining secrets
That we had from each other
Would be removed by this action
So gallantly ordered a takeaway curry
A vindaloo to do the job denying the hands on approach.
The morning arrived, taxi booked
And off we went on our adventure
Agreeing some early hour the better to get it over
The afternoon for rest and recuperation.
We sat together holding hands
In an empty waiting room
Secret panic as enormity rises
And negative thoughts sneak in.
His name was called and off he went
A smiling nurse with care in her eyes
And I heard her ask if he had purged
And half laughed, half shuddered as I knew his reply.
I read my book and leafed through magazines
The only time I get to met the new, young, famous
I am far too able to pretend disinterest in in normal life
And waited for the return of my valiant hero.
And return he did, bag overflowing with nightwear
But slippers still on his feet
Waving a photograph above his head
Showing me and the now full waiting room,
Bemused passersby and porters
While declaring ownership of the most ‘splendid colon’,
Pushing the image up to my face
Of his smooth walled pipe.
On our journey home the taxi driver seemed interested,
Or maybe professionally polite.
I asked the question that was hanging unsaid.
Well did the curry do the trick?
Apparently not, it is not an NHS formality
To allow Vindaloo to act as a clearing agent
And irrigation was swiftly administered,
Thank goodness not by my hand.
His splendid colon is now stuff of legends
Friends have offered to write songs
Odes will be narrated,
Theatrical performances presented,
And my husband’s passageway will be mentioned to students
As they train to examine rectal corridors
Held as an example of how a diet of curry and beer
Can ensure your colon will always be clear.