Views And Reviews

Their simple sorrows

BMJ 1994; 309 doi: (Published 05 November 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:1239
  1. P Hettiaratchy

    There has been heavy fighting overnight. As I walk towards the outpatients' department I hear the crash of shells nearby and the angry buzz of bullets overhead. The department is busy, people swarming, shouting, screaming. I push through to the first patient. He is a young boy, perhaps 11 years old. He is lying still, his eyes half closed, his arms folded across his chest, serene. His father stands beside him, puzzled, gently touching his arm. I feel for the boy's carotid pulse. Nothing. As I remove my hand his blood drips from my fingers. There is a small bullet hole just by his heart. I move on, avoiding …

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