Where souls refuse to go

By Pauline Thiele

In 2010 I was urged to write about our son, Liam, and submit the narrative for publication with the Journal of Medical Ethics.  The three following three people, in the said order, were my greatest encouragement and support throughout the submission: Andrew Watkins (neonatologist), John Harris (the then editor-in-chief of JME/bioethicist), and Dominic Wilkinson (neonatologist/bioethicist).  I thank them from the bottom on my heart and dedicate the following poem to them.


Where Souls Refuse to Go

Pauline Thiele


Where souls refuse to go,

be it far or be it near,

my words shall be an instrument

that removes all hate and fear.


Let me dip my nib in ink –

may that ink be filled with fire.

Let me write in cursive script,

sear the tongue of any liar.


I will take what is unethical,

turn all that’s wrong to right.

My pen shall be my sword,

my words shall join the fight.


Let my words heal broken hearts,

and open stagnant minds.

Let them speak clearly to the deaf,

open the eyes of the chosen blind.


I shall write it in a narrative,

or demand it in a poem.

Just give me pen and paper,

and I will walk in Satan’s zone.


Let my words confront the unethical,

so truth everyone will know.

My pen shall take the journey

where souls refuse to go.


Paper title: He was my son, not a dying baby

Author: Pauline Thiele

Affiliation: Main Ridge, Victoria, Australia

Competing interests: None

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