Poetry Month, April 2018: 'Breathe' 1 & 2
Breathing is essential for life, for any creature. We take it for granted until an unfortunate situation might create difficulties and we have to fight to get enough air. These ‘situations’ come in all shapes and guises.
one to five,
this soul alive.
still and pale,
Stay with me!
Not the time
for life to flee.’
gulp of air,
eyes search life,
meet his and stare.
‘Oh! So sorry, I didn’t mean…
You made me cross, that step not seen.
I pushed you harder than I thought,
don’t look like that, your foot got caught,
I wasn’t trying to harm you, stay!
I’ll not be cruel again… today.’
How many people are abused by their partners? The culprits say they’ll never do it again, it was a bad mistake, they’ll have therapy. Do they? Is it a vicious cycle? I believe, sadly, that it’s difficult for those ‘addicted’ to violence to abstain, unless they do undergo some sort of therapy with serious intentions to reform.
Gentle Breathing of Sleep
I watch you breathe in slumber deep.
Such soft sighs, murmurs in your sleep.
Waiting to catch my name maybe,
wondering if you dream of me.
Then, stabbing through the peaceful air,
hardly the answer to my prayer,
another’s name you whisper sweet,
my heart is shattered; then my feet
tiptoe away, leaving forever.
She wakes and wonders where he’s gone.
A funny dream she had where one
from long ago lingered and smiled,
her now late brother. As a child,
she ran into his arms with glee.
'Where is my love? I’ll go to see…..'
Finding out the Facts, Asking Questions
How often do we jump to conclusions? We don’t wait to ask questions or listen to explanations. The result can be tragic or dangerous or just plain stupid.
How many times have lovers parted, sometimes to commit suicide, when one question would have saved them both?
Always ask questions, reasons why, before taking an impulsive decision! What you see or hear is not necessarily a sign of the facts. We can interpret the best or the worst, depending on the situation and our emotions. Logic and reason must prevail over raw human emotions.
How to Administer CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation)
This is the UK NHS (National Health Service) advice:
‘To carry out a chest compression:
- Place the heel of your hand on the breastbone at the centre of the person’s chest. Place your other hand on top of your first hand and interlock your fingers.
- Position yourself with your shoulders above your hands.
- Using your body weight (not just your arms), press straight down by 5-6cm (2-2.5 inches) on their chest.
- Keeping your hands on their chest, release the compression and allow the chest to return to its original position.
- Repeat these compressions at a rate of 100 to 120 times per minute until an ambulance arrives or you become exhausted.
When you call for an ambulance, telephone systems now exist that can give basic life-saving instructions, including advice about CPR. These are now common and are easily accessible with mobile phones.’
They advise that if you have training and are confident about the procedure, you can give ‘rescue breaths’ too. See site for details.
How long can someone go without air?
‘After five to ten minutes of not breathing, you are likely to develop serious and possibly irreversible brain damage. The one exception is when a younger person stops breathing and also becomes very cold at the same time.’
The following is a brief explanation:
‘Breathing (or respiration or ventilation) is the process of moving air into and out of the lungs to facilitate gas exchange with the internal environment, mostly by bringing in oxygen and flushing out carbon dioxide.
Breathing brings air into the lungs where gas exchange takes place in the alveoli through diffusion. The body’s circulatory system transports these gasses to and from the cells, where "cellular respiration" takes place.
The breathing of all vertebrates with lungs consists of repetitive cycles of inhalation and exhalation through a highly branched system of tubes or airways which lead from the nose to the alveoli.Under normal conditions the breathing depth and rate is automatically, and unconsciously, controlled. Over-breathing (hyperventilation) and under-breathing (hypoventilation) both cause distressing symptoms.
Breathing has other important functions. It provides a mechanism for speech, laughter and similar expressions of the emotions. It is also used for reflexes such as yawning, coughing and sneezing. Animals that cannot thermoregulate by perspiration, because they lack sufficient sweat glands, may lose heat by evaporation through panting.’
Questions & Answers
© 2018 Ann Carr