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Loss of function

By: ZJQ (Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health)
Competition Year: 2018
Votes (1) | Comments (0)
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I have lost poetry.

Words don't blossom at my fingertip anymore,
metaphors are lost in cobwebbed airways,
and imagery blots ugly like a photocopier on its last run.
Dust gathers like caving craters in the hollows of my heart,
where poetry used to be, where I’d nurtured rhymes,
polished and honed words, like wisdom.

The sparrow on the elm branch is past its prime.

I have lost poetry to the chesty cough of damp green sickness,
to the wheezing of endless suffering,
to the blue lips of asthmatics,
to the stony reality of death.

There is no rhythm in the erratic fluttering of a failing heart,
No muse in the mechanical stutters, the whispered consultations.
When eyes meet, tired eyebrows and shattered pupils, smiles cost more than they should.

If the world is a lover, why does everyone leave?

An expanse of devastation before my praying eyes,
but I don't express what I can't in medical terms.
Amidst the jargon, I seek refuge.
If words take longer to understand, maybe they’ll be less real.
If I could pour warmth down every atherosclerotic artery, I would.
If my breath meant anything, I’d banish hypoxia.
If my tears could replenish apoptotic cells…

There is no greater silence than the last few attempts of a heart that gave too much -
Craggy wings, beaten
I walk forward, because that’s where the light is.
And promises,
like next time, the next one.
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