I started letting things inhale me;
Books, films, documentaries and albums.
They restrained me from thinking for myself.
Entrenched me in the lives of others.
Whether they were humble,
I was inhaled.
During this time it felt like my own respiration was at a stop.
I no longer took breath as myself.
I hid beneath duvets and learned the ins and outs of fictional character’s lives.
Until I knew them more than I knew myself.
Day turning to night, it kept me safe.
I was deprived.
I needed air.
My lungs like crumpled paper bags trying to inflate.
My feet pounding the fields and my heart ricochetting in its cage,
In an effort to self-resuscitate.
And then I could feel it,
Pounding in my ears and burning through my veins.
To the boundaries undefined.
My lap is un-timed.
There it sits,
Over my senses like a mask.
Forcing the air into me.
Whether I want it or not.
The colours are bright and the smell embraces,
The petals kiss my hands and the herbs rub against my fingers like affectionate kittens.
I flop back on the grass and admire the nothing above me.
And how beautiful simple nothing can be.
And how lucky I am to have found it.
I can move.
I spin and walk and make my fingers dance on the surface of the pond.
I carefully stroke the baby apple tree and I can feel it respire between my index finger and thumb.
And then I had broken free.
And I was exhaled.