For the group Literary Reference in Pictures




A definition, friends, of stress:

Your own reaction to a mess

Stresses may be large or small

Sometimes they're not perceived at all

Examples: Say a lack of cash;

A just-avoided freeway crash;

An allergen that's in the air;

The barber says you're losing hair;

Fifty on a spavined horse;

Attorney's letter re divorce;

Wetness, dryness, heat or cold;

Callow youth or getting old

Stress from pains to pleasures range

The common element is change

Adapt or die, and that's a fact

And so our bodies must react:

The heart speeds up, the gut slows down

Facial muscles snarl or frown

Bronchial tubes expand and then

The blood absorbs more oxygen

Widened pupils search the void

Adrenal glands secrete steroid

Serum glucose starts to climb

More insulin works overtime

Stressed physically or mentally

Muscles tense to fight or flee

The midbrain boils with rage and fear

While cortex plans to save your rear

The point is, stress is not unique

It doesn't mean you're dumb or weak

A part of mankind's constitution

Bequeathed to us by evolution

Common both to man and beast

It proves you're still alive, at least.


By William Goldsmith, MD

  • Lynn Morag PRO 9y

    Brill! Great poem teamed with such a fun and perfect image!
  • Peggy J Hughes 9y

    :) I agree with Lynn. We can all relate to this sometime (or too often?) and the look on this character's face is exactly how I feel when stressed. Big smiles!
  • coalvillestation 9y

    Here is a remedy to De-stress: why not to join the Henhouse group!:
  • c_ambler 8y

    I hope you don't mind if I use this on my blog:

    if you have any opposition, please send me a message and I will take it off as soon as possible!
  • michaelwinter94 7y

    Nice picture, good poem.
  • toby.crowley 7y

    I used this photo for a blog post on describing personality in English. ( I love how much personality this photo has! Thanks for making it available!
  • vu.erik 6y

    Nice picture I used this picture for my school project about...stress.
    thank you!
  • Lucy MacDonald 6y

    Thank you for sharing this photo. I've used it, with credit and a link, to illustrate a positive quote at Positive Attitude Quotes.
  • David Kirba 6y

    Thank you for sharing. I am hoping to use this on my blog (slightly modified) in an article about stress. I am adding a credit on the image. Would you like it to link back to your profile on flickr?
  • jen palais 5y

    what to say...perfect.
  • Larchleaf 4y

    Great pic Dave! I've borrowed it for my blog post on the Stress Test from the BBC - please let me know if you are unhappy in any way:

  • CrossCap 3y

    Awesome picture, thanks for sharing it. I used it for a series of blog posts ( on planning for marketers, and credited you with a link back to your profile.
  • Laura 3y

    Love it! I used this picture on SpanglishBeaty!! Hope you don't mind! Gave you credit!
  • Barbara amsel 2y

    I really love your write-ups guys continue the good work.
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Taken on January 23, 2006
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