To think that I saw it on Pharmacy Street

John Hersey


As I sat on father’s lap
Dear daddy said to me,
“These pharmaceuticals I sell
Make money grow on trees
They keep your mom in minks and furs
And give us food to eat
And you’ll see all the good they do
As you walk down the street.”

And so I set out on my two little feet
To take a quick stroll down Pharmacy Street.
I saw many people, I saw many things
I saw how the leaves had turned green in the spring.

But the main thing I noticed, what turned my small head
Was the vibrance of people who once looked half-dead.
Why, there’s Mr. Johnson. Just look at his face!
The sadness he had, now there’s nary a trace!

His head had hung heavy, his voice had no sound
His frown was so down that it scraped on the ground.
But he got a prescription, and his joy stretched for miles
Because now he’s on Zoloft, and now he’s all smiles.

“Hello, Mr. Johnson,” I said  with a grin.
“You look like your problems have all been done in.”
“I’ve never been better,” he bellowed with glee.
“Just look at the great things that happened to me!

“Tacos made me queasy, they ruined my day
But then Prilosec took my reflux away!
Insomnia made me convulse, quake and shake
But then I took Ambien — no longer awake!

“A round of Propecia put hair on my head
And Levitra has made me a monster in bed!
My wife had cold sores and a thick hairy chest
Vaniqa took the hairs, and Valtrex the rest!

“These pills are a blessing, they’re truly the savior
And, now we can revel in risky behavior.
My wife, she laid out in the sun for a week
She looked like a handbag that fell in a creek

“But she took Renova, and time did rewind
Now her skin is as smooth as a baby’s behind.
And I ate as much as a stomach could take
Devouring egg rolls and donuts and cake.

 “I looked like a family of big hairy Wookies
Then I took Reductil, now bring on the cookies!
These pills are our lives, upon them we depend.
We’ll take them forever, for that is the trend.

“We'll put them in coffee, we’ll put them in stew
We'll put them in squash and in lamb vindaloo.
And we’re not alone, why, just look all around
You’ll never again hear a petulant sound.

“That quiet child there, he’s Ritalin-soaked
That Zyban-filled woman was teeming with smoke.
Before Retin-A that girl’s skin looked like bark
And before Seroxat, I’d just sit in the dark.

"So you see, my dear boy, that pure joy you will greet
If you trust your contentment to Pharmacy Street!”
So I ran to my home and exclaimed to my dad,
“Those drugs that you sell made the sad people glad!”

“Those drugs are a godsend, dear son,” he then said.
“Without them, I’d never get out of my bed."
And he gave me a hug and sent me on my way
And I’ll never forget the kind words he did say.

“Ah, my young Celebrex, know that life is a treat!
Because you get to live on Pharmacy Street.”

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