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The Yorkshire Man
By Cohl Warren-Howles
Everyone looks forward to making memories together
come rain, come shine, whatever the weather,
but sometimes, it doesn’t work out as we’ve planned
and the cards we’ve been dealt, are not the hand
we’ve assumed the path, our lives will take
and all our ideas, we may have to forsake.
And we walk to road, that none would chose
when delivered a diagnosis, with the news
that one has a condition, that will change everything
with the pain and heartache and the tears it will bring.
For this courageous man, I write these words,
whose love for his family, flies as high as the birds,
with determination to never give in
and against all odds, he’s resolved to win.
He’s a man from Yorkshire, who’s fighting a disease
that’s robbing his movement and his voice, it will seize,
but with his strength of purpose, he remains steadfast
to fight this condition, he did not forecast.
He knows he is already, losing his voice,
so using technology, has become his choice
to preserve, how he sounds, for his girls and his wife
to remember him by, when he no longer has life.
As one’s voice is as unique, as one’s face
he’s decided to record and to embrace
the help of thirty voices, that sound like his own
with its modulation, its rhythm and its tone.
By moving his eyes and the use of infrared,
he can spell out his words, which the computer speaks instead,
but the beauty of this ability, is he keeps his identity
and doesn’t sound like a synthesized, generic non-entity.
A preprogrammed voice, would just not be him,
it would confuse his girls, which would be grim,
so this machine makes all the difference in the world
for himself and his wife, but especially his girls.
Diagnosed with MND, the cruelest disease
however much one prays, however much one pleas,
it relentlessly progresses, as it steals one’s health
and carries on robbing, with its insidious stealth.
But this concentrated man, has focused his mind
to not be its victim and has not resigned
himself to be stopped in doing all the things,
that makes him happy, that life brings.
From zip wire and to driving, a Formula One
and flying a microlight, just had to be done
and tackling the terrain of the Yorkshire Moor
in his electric wheelchair, 4 x 4.
He wants to make others more aware
of this disorder, that’s so unfair,
six people in the UK, are diagnosed each day
and a third of these, in a year it will slay.
So my thoughts and praise are with this man
who against all odds, does what he can,
whilst he battles with this beast, he can’t control
but to enjoy every moment, now is his goal.
I speak because I witnessed my father fight
this dreadful disease, with all his might,
more money must be found for a cure
so we all can be really sure
that this beast can be controlled
before more stories like this, will be told.