She breathes like a butterfly:

small, stilted wiry breaths,

filigree fragile like her wings

so easily squashed between

a finger and thumb.


She breathes on though –

all tubes and blinking lights

as her chest falls, falls,

then rises in defiance

against the pale washed walls.


She flutters and flits,

paper thin limbs and dry

as cotton lips – every inhale

and exhale is fixed,

a machine counting every tick.


She would be much better

off between the Spring to

Summer flowers, better placed

amongst the rising tendrils

of brighter days and fierce tomorrows.


But I fear this freedom

would open a door for

goodbyes and close

the mud-battered one

still keeping her alive.



Image by Anja🤗#helpinghands#stayathome #solidarity#stays healthy🙏 from Pixabay

Written for #escapril2020

Poem: © Kristiana Reed 2020

Between the Trees UK

Between the Trees US

Signed copies on Etsy

3 thoughts on “Growth/decay

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