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xxxI pray thee, peace. I will be flesh and blood,
xxxFor there was never yet philosopher
xxxThat could endure the toothache patiently,
xxxHowever they have writ the style of gods
xxxAnd made a push at chance and sufferance.
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx[Much Ado About Nothing]



The Bard of Avon tells us there was never
(As usual, he was right, of that I’m sure)
Philosopher, however bloody clever,
Who patiently the toothache could endure.
And now I’m down in t’mouth (though not in pain)
For, though I had three fillings done last week,
I have to see the dentist yet again —
A cusp’s been snapped off by a piece of leek!

Whether she wants to stuff it, top or pull it,
Or close the breach up with my first false tooth,
I’ll have to bite another costly bullet;
And, lest you doubt that Shakespeare told the truth,
He also said — and this is why I frown —
“Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown”



I invoke my poetic licence there.  In 2002, all of a sudden, a piece of leek (which I had prepared in a tasty wine and cheese sauce) wrapped its fibres around my lower right six and somehow managed to pull one piece, or cusp, off and away from the filling.  This led to a visit to my expensive Hampstead dentist, and that led to the fitting of a very expensive porcelain crown … beneath which the nerve subsequently died off, so my slightly more reasonable private Edinburgh dentist had to drill through it and fill the gap with composite and I still have to floss under the thing because it never sat low enough under the gum line and will need to be removed one day.  And they say leeks make a cheap and healthy alternative to more protein-rich foods!

In the current case, it was merely eating some vanilla ice cream that led to the sudden detachment of a cusp on my lower right seven.  I suppose it may have been helped along by the treatment to the teeth above it only two days before, but who wants to look into suing a charming NHS dentist, or anyone who might be sticking drills in one’s mouth in later years?  Anyway she did what appears so far to be a pretty good repair job with composite, so I wrote her this pome.