Night Shift

With our company always on call
we were rostered on different shifts
though some did only night shifts.

Some of us died young
under retiring age.
All those who died within
my ten years there
had only worked night shifts
for at least several years.

Doris had a brain tumour
Enid had stomach cancer
May had lung cancer
Alf had a massive heart attack.
Young Jack was medicated
for seizures. He went to sleep
one night and never woke up.

Relief workers came in
each time staff attended
yet another funeral.

We all knew those who had passed away
had spent so long on night shift yet
I heard no one question it.

I do wonder:
are our bodies chewed up
by turning day into night ?
night into day ?

For some do not survive night shift.

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Night Shift

21 thoughts on “Night Shift

  1. The last question is interesting. It depends on the stress levels one endures outside of that. I am sorry to hear about the way your colleagues passed away. Here’s to better health for everyone.

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  2. I’m very sorry to hear about your colleagues. I remember my father used to work nights when I was a boy. He hated it. Many years later, I worked night shifts as a summer job and found it exhausting and draining. I could well believe that doing it over a long period could have serious health implications for some people.

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    1. Thank you. I am sure it upsets our natural body rhythms to work at night, unless we have the circadian rhythms of a night owl type, like my brother. This was just too many people dying too young,comparing to other jobs I have worked in, and among people I know.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Unfortunately your poem is quite correct. I read an article about women working night shift being more prone to certain cancers. I’ve done nights now for 6 years. I started nights as it fitted so well with girls – I’m with them every night to bath them – I don’t start till 11.00pm and I’m home before they wake. It’s easier now they’re both in school, I manage my sleep very well. I must confess I like night shift, I like the solitude and quietness – but dayshift will beckon eventually. Much love xxx

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