I breathe therefore I am until I’m not
I suck it in & push it out
Soft warm moist filaments of air link me to the living world
I pull on them, expand & travel
My first memory.
Follows cruel thin & mean crepuscular childhood asthmatic beathing. Blue liped, exhaustion, shoulders heaving pointlessly on wide spread ribs, stomach sucked in and pushed out in vacuous despairing respiration. Doctors with bad breath, a mother breathing for me a steaming kettle for relief in hand (& comics the best of tonics).
Adolescence introduced a whole new world of breathing! Along with variations on not breathing.
Thus far not breathing was deaths stalking horse. Now came the realisation of the value and importance of the spaces between breaths. This opening up of knowledge coincided with the expansion of my lungs. I was 12. I started to run, and in blew a whole new rich techi-coloured oxygen saturated world. Oh joyous life affirming air. I had some serious catching up to do.
I wasn’t hungrmy for that air I was ravenous! Having once clawed and scratched and rasped, once released, I demanded please sir can I have some more!
Hormone’s. Suffused, drenched, near drowned in an unseen chemistry, a machine assembled, fueled by a desire hot and quick. Semi controlled. Fingers spread, mouth and mind open taught tight confident and defined, air was channelled in rank and file without care, unconscious consumption, seeking boundaries expecting and planning for none, resistance futile!
A new Breathless…
When it came. When it happened. So soft & Unforgettable. Do YOU remember my first kiss H….? Do you remember where you stood, the perfume you wore, how your hair was cut, the jacket you wore? You only need ask. Did you feel my heart leap? My breath leave my body & my slow inhalation? Were you aware of your absolute & complete capture within me?
A breathing memory amygdala fixed fast, and with this came that sighing breath of dreamers and dreams of things that could have should have but did not…first of loves many found and sought and fought for and lost but always always remembered.
Laughing breath, light and free, or deep deep rib bruising joy of the infinite infinite joys of life full of warm days and hot nights
Then in balance. For every rise there’s
Hard. Cold. Petrifying. Stuttering. Chain stoking. Unremitting. Black breath of death and loss and falling falling falling… No catching, but a choking breath that comes juddering shuddering in great lifeless boulders. This is a breath you cannot void. It is unavoidable. It cannot sustain nought but. Pain.
And on the song sings because it must,
For you and I,
Oxygenate or….. die,
And turn to dust.