Leigh Ladd

Cannot Breathe - Poem by Leigh Ladd

It starts with a scratch,
Then a cough.
Back to a tickle,
You think it is gone.
Noticing one day
The cough is back,
Only worse this time,
Air is what you lack.
Gasping for air,
Yet none gets in.
The pain is getting worse,
Your body becoming thin.
You will be alright,
It is just a cold,
You have things to do,
No time to put on hold.
Weeks go by,
Not knowing what is,
Soon the bugs are crawling
Inside of your head.
What is up and what is down,
Where is the air you need to live,
Why will the pain not go away,
Will it ever end?
One more night is all it would have taken,
Instead you wake up with all sorts of tubes,
Not able to move and cannot talk,
Last thing you remember is you wanted food.

It has been a few years,
Yet you are still scared as hell.
You pretend all is fine,
There is no one to tell.
You managed to survive,
For reasons unknown.
You wish you could speak,
Release your fears.
A friend to listen,
Someone to care.
Coming that close,
It damages your mind.
If people got to know you,
They would see the clues,
That this is a difficult time of year.
That first cough,
The now imaginary pain,
Roughness of the voice,
It makes you go insane.
You are afraid to sleep,
Scared to wake,
Petrified to see the other side.
You wonder what would have happened
If you had just gone to bed.
You cannot breathe,
You are dead.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, November 2, 2006

Poem Edited: Monday, November 1, 2010

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