Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Death of Me

The tips of my fingers are sweet,
like my Grandfather’s pipe
on winter mornings in 1982.
The snap of a lighter
makes my throat itch,
and the sizzle is as if heaven
existed in a small bowl, ethereal red.

I obsess on that sound and smell
for every minute of the day, until
the warm hits my lungs
and snakes through my body.
Heavy eyelids weigh on my thoughts
and my shell sinks beneath me.

A small knot wrangles the sweat from my pores,
my mind begins to flood with paranoia, drowning
in my own shallow breaths: “I can’t breathe!”
“Wait, the air is thick in here! Am I dying?”
The room is tight, closing in—
with residue of my eventual death.

The next morning I awake
from the slow cessation of life.
Staring at the ink etched into my arm,
seared like a cattle brand onto my brain,
the comforting knowledge of Syrus:
*“stultum est timere quod vitare non potes”.
And, my death continues…

by Brad Pickett


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