My next-door neighbor has been invited to participate in a creative writing conference (because she’s so good at words). Earlier she recited a few of her original poems to us common folk. To say the least, I was inspired. Here’s my poem about asthma- what I’m experiencing this moment.

No mercy. Bearing his full weight on my upper body.

No escape. He laughs, but I cannot.

Only whispers escape from what used to be a lively, unfiltered stream.

This voice is not familiar. So weak, breathless, wretched.

Not self-pity. but a desperate attempt to shame his obesity off of me.

No doubt, saturated with what could only have been sandbag-pancakes for breakfast and lead-salami lunch sandwiches,

He sits, perched as only a mountain would. Oppressive and immovable.

The wind blows through me as if to steal what breath I have left,

And I will not leave this bed, because air can be found nowhere else.

I ask them for “more weight,” but I am not Giles Corey and this is not The Crucible.

Sorry it’s not more upbeat. It’s been a long day.


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