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Texas | Columns | "Once Upon A Line"

Phineas Gage

by David Knape

Let us give praise
to Phineas Gage,
a young railroad man
remarkably brave,
who took an iron rod
to his head one day,
went in one eye
out the other way

The dynamite spike
too soon engaged,
blew up in
this young man's face,
the doctor raced
then was amazed,
that life was left
in Phineas Gage

While Phineas suffered
shock and pain,
he vomited
part his brain,
still Phineas
was only dazed,
he functioned well
the rest of his days

Which only proves
humans are strange,
can operate
with half a brain,
conceit is normal
in the main,
yet how smart we'd be
if we used all our brain.


© d.knape

September 16, 2014
* In 1848, railway worker Phineas Gage survived having an iron rod driven through his brain. The tamping iron was 43 inches long and went in his left cheek, up behind his left eye, and out the top of his head.

Fellow workers took him to a boarding house, where he had enough of his wits about him to quip to the local doctor: "Here is business enough for you". One witness reported that Gage got up and vomited a teacupful of his brain, which fell upon the floor.

More "Once Upon A Line" - Light verse and poetry by d.knape
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