Tag Archives: anxiety

Exhalation

I have been holding my breath again,
not leaving you much choice
but to wait.

This has always been my first response
when frightened —
but you learned this years ago.

I feel
your yearning
to speak
after the children have been tucked in
(we wouldn’t be interrupted)
and as the tea kettle births
steam onto the darkened window;

your abiding
in the deep quiet
(so ripe)
that hours later
envelopes us in our bed.

But exhalation
gives life to fear —
merely scratching out a poem,
lightly and in pencil,
would risk too much.

So you bear the silence for us,
even as our skin touches,
the cold back of your thigh
reminding me
you are there,
giving me everything
just by lying still,
waiting for me to breathe.