Poetry Month, April 2018: 'Breathe' 1 and 2

Updated on September 7, 2019
annart profile image

Ann loves to write poetry and stories. Current poetry on Nature, Travel & beyond, including varied poetic structures.


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.

Human Lungs

Lungs showing pulmonary tract
Lungs showing pulmonary tract | Source

Breathe (1)

‘Breathe! Breathe!’

Hands thump,

chest bumps,

eyes stare,

no air.

Push, count,

one to five,

blow, keep

this soul alive.

Body slumped,

still and pale,

Another thump,

breath stale.

‘Don’t go!

Stay with me!

Not the time

for life to flee.’

Body twitch,

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.’

AFC 2018


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

Breathe easy
Breathe easy

Breathe (2)

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…..'

AFC 2018

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.


Lesson with Dummy
Lesson with Dummy | Source

How to Administer CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation)

This is the UK NHS (National Health Service) advice:

‘To carry out a chest compression:

  1. 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.
  2. Position yourself with your shoulders above your hands.
  3. Using your body weight (not just your arms), press straight down by 5-6cm (2-2.5 inches) on their chest.
  4. Keeping your hands on their chest, release the compression and allow the chest to return to its original position.
  5. 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.’

Breathing Process

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.’

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2018 Ann Carr


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    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      3 months ago from SW England

      Thank you Peggy. Sadly, that is the case. I appreciate your kind words.


    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      3 months ago from Houston, Texas

      When I was reading your first poem, I thought only of the CPR being done. I never gave thought to spousal abuse until the last lines. The statistics sadly show that abusers seldom are cured. You always put so much thought into your poetry.

    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Wow, Doris! Thank you for such a great comment. I'm pleased to create emotion with my poetry but don't like the thought of you crying! Yes, I remember that scene now. How apt!

      Thanks for your visit; much appreciated.


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Verlie: Thank you. Yes, I've calmed down now! A few more in the pipeline almost ready to go....


    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      2 years ago from Beautiful South

      Super poetry, Ann. Both really tear at my heart. Your second poem reminded me of Hans Solo and Princess Leia. Remember the scene? He asked her if she loved Luke Skywalker, and she answered yes. He started to walk away. She said, "You don't understand. He's my brother." That gave me chills. Your poem brought tears.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 

      2 years ago from Canada

      Breath of fresh air Ann :) Pace yourself lady, lots of days to go!

    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you so much, Frank! I'm trying to keep this up but time is interfering. I'll certainly do my best - it's my challenge to me now! I wish I was that clever - your comment is making my head too big, I'll become overconfident....!

      Thanks again.


    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      2 years ago from Shelton

      I hope you keep this up all month.. the concept was amazing.. in all you are amazing.. just so clever..:)

    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Hello Jackie! Thanks for your generous comment. I think many a problem is caused through misunderstanding and not enough talking.

      Good to see you today.


    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 

      2 years ago from the beautiful south

      This was certainly packed with a punch! Great read with information and entertainment!

      It really is one of the saddest things when someone commits suicide over love.

    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you so much, Linda. Yes, we had the advert with that song, with Vinnie Jones doing CPR in the street - hilarious! A great way to bring it home.

      I'm enjoying writing poetry at the moment. I've done quite a few before but I have to be in the mood, whereas other writing is more natural for me.

      Good to see you today. I know I've missed loads of your cookery hubs while I've been away but I'll try to catch up, little by little.


    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 

      2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Wow Ann! I'm just stunned. You are SUCH a gifted writer, I am glad that you are branching out into poetry.

      Did you know that paramedics here in the US tell us to follow the beat of the Bee Gees "Stayin' Alive" to have the proper timing and rhythm for CPR?

    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      You make me smile -'word association on steroids'! Thanks for your great comment, bill.

      Off to a charity pub quiz later so I hope my word association is working later too.


    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      This was like following the flight of a hummingbird...or word association on steroids...a fun read...some important points made....social commentary...packed with wallop!!!!

      Wishing you a breathable Monday, my friend!


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      manatita: Thank you for your lovely words of support. I'm so glad you like this.

      Envious about the sunshine! It's trying to push through today but a bit half-heartedly.

      Enjoy Africa!


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you very much, Audrey. Having a comment from a professional is great. So glad you like this and thank you for your support.


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      'Cool and refreshing'; thank you, Eric, I like that! Thanks for the encouraging words.


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you Mary. Funny you should talk about depth, as I've been trying to add more of that, so that means a lot to me. Yes breathing is essential - careful, controlled breathing to relieve stress. Good to see you today.


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you, Chris. Your words give me a boost. Yes, we create problems that don't exist, don't we?

      Yes, 26 more to go! I have a few more in draft so far...


    • annart profile imageAUTHOR

      Ann Carr 

      2 years ago from SW England

      Thank you Flourish for your kind words and encouragement. Much appreciated.

      I like to put a little background into my poetry hubs, just relative bits and pieces!


    • manatita44 profile image


      2 years ago from london

      very, very interesting Hub! I loved the way it flowed, although, like the great performance poets, you shifted a little and then came back to the breathing. The first poem is an excellent piece, because it's cleverly woven and so well done! Also, you know I'm a nurse, right, so I identified with it straight away

      I saw a movie with John Travolta where he killed his wife and best friend, because of a misunderstanding. Yes, happens in real life and about the abuse thing, some say that the average woman is abused 22 times before she decides to do something about it. Not great! The abuse, I mean. We have all sorts of reasons why we stay.

      You health info is truly life-saving stuff!

      Finally, I have told Bill that any great writer is also a poet. I think that he now agrees with me. It's nice to see you doing poetry so well. Stay safe and enjoy the sun like me in Africa. Peace!

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      2 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Excellent! So well done, Ann. I teach diaphragmatic breathing every day so I appreciate this informative article and your poetry.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      This is really well done. Captivating poetry and excellent facts about breathing. I like how you did it, it is cool and refreshing.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Two poems with such depth using the most important in our lives, our breath. Breathing is life and I always start my mediation by being aware of my breathing.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 

      2 years ago from Traverse City, MI

      Great writing, Ann. This was captivating and interesting all the way through. No, we don't leave our significant other when they utter a name in their sleep. We ask them at breakfast, "So, who is Joe?" They say, "The brother I lost long before we met." Problem (that never existed) solved. Twenty six more poems to go this month, right?

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      2 years ago from USA

      This was a combination of eerie, compelling, and educational. You don't often see that! I like what you've done here and sure hope it continues.


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