Art, music, literature
A lot of it lives in the trachea, you know.
But not so much that you won’t need more muscle:
the diaphragm, a fist clenching at the bottom.
Inhale. So many of us are breathless,
you know, like me
kneeling to collect the pottery shards
of a house plant my elbow has nudged
into oblivion. What if I sigh,
and the black earth beneath me scatters
like insects running from my breath?
Am I a god then? Am I insane
because I worry about the disassembling of earth
regularly? I walk more softly now
into gardens or up the steps of old houses
with impatiens stuffed in their window boxes.
When it’s you standing there with a letter
or voice or face full of solemn news,
will you hold your breath before you knock?
Respiration Jamaal May
We were made to understand it would be
Terrible. Every small want, every niggling urge,
Every hate swollen to a kind of epic wind.
Livid, the land, and ravaged, like a rageful
Dream. The worst in us having taken over
And broken the rest utterly down.
A long age
Passed. When at last we knew how little
Would survive us—how little we had mended
Or built that was not now lost—something
Large and old awoke. And then our singing
Brought on a different manner of weather.
Then animals long believed gone crept down
From trees. We took new stock of one another.
We wept to be reminded of such color
An Old Story Tracey K Smith
- Anxiety UK – Charity providing support if you have been diagnosed with an anxiety condition. Phone 03444 775 774 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am – 5.30pm)
- CALM – Campaign Against Living Miserably, for men aged 15-35. Phone 0800 58 58 58 (daily, 5pm – 12am)
- Mental Health Foundation – Provides information and support for anyone with mental health problems and learning disabilities
- Mind – Promotes the views and needs of people with mental health problems. Phone 0300 123 3393 (Mon-Fri, 9am – 6pm)
- No Panic – Charity offering support for sufferers of panic attacks and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Offers a course to help overcome your phobia or OCD. Phone 0844 967 4848 (daily, 10am – 10pm)
- Papyrus – Young suicide prevention society. Phone HOPElineUK 0800 068 4141 (Mon-Fri, 10am-5pm, 7pm – 10pm, Sat-Sun, 2pm – 5pm)
- Samaritans – Confidential support for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair. Phone 116 123 (free 24/7 helpline)