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‘The body is…an extraordinary laboratory of possibility.’

Anthony Gormley


One sunny September Saturday I left

the Welcome Collection’s airy reading room,

stopped at the Picasso mural then took

the wide circular staircase past floors of

exemplary, aesthetic exhibits

of grave clothes, dentist drills, tranquillisers,

body parts, through the café and bookshop

into Euston Road’s fumy hugger-mugger.


I heard the siren first, behind me, saw

the traffic, past Euston towards St Pancras,

begin to slow as one of Great Ormond Street’s

acute care ambulances barrelled

down the outside lane then suddenly swerved

through an emergency services gap

in the central barrier and drove towards

the three lanes of oncoming vehicles

paused at the lights where the ambulance

would turn right – and I paused, amidst London’s

extravagant roar, moved by all this

for such a little life.




© Copyright David Selzer
1 Response
  • Mary Clark
    May 1, 2017

    It’s heartening to know care is still taken for every life as though it’s a singular wonder, and we’ve too many of us been in that ambulance, thankful for the caring. And that people pause on the street. I know I watch watchfully, silently, as an ambulance passes by.

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