Still You Breathe


Lovingly extracted from each child

Permission to end this long fight

But still you breathe


With the smile of an excited child

You are eager for this final trip

But still you breathe


Finally your head lays on your own pillow

Your chosen ending place

But still you breathe


Farewells and endearments shared

Like a king holding his final court

But still you breathe


You go to sleep with this grand intention

Then wake in frustration

For still you breathe


To God, spirits not born and ancestors returned

I pray for them to bring you home

But still you breathe


I lie on the floor in the dark

Counting the long seconds after a gasp

But still you breathe


We have made the switch in our hearts

Wishing for you to crossover not recover

But still you breathe


I wish I knew the password to open the gates

The magic sentiment that would at last

still your breath


Comments 25 comments

Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 6 years ago from United States

Beautiful poem, unique emotion. It's amazing how elastic time can be.


poetvix profile image

poetvix 6 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

This impresses me as so sad, like one lingering when passing would be such a blessing. I imagine it took some courage and pain to write this. I thank you.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

It took so long and was over so too soon Tom.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thanks for reading poetvix. Writing helps me process emotions that I would be trapped behind otherwise.


pjk_artist profile image

pjk_artist 6 years ago from Turkey Point, ON

Everyone passes on when it is their time. No sooner...no later. Your loved one lingers because you or somebody around them need to learn something.


Stan Fletcher profile image

Stan Fletcher 6 years ago from Nashville, TN

"You go to sleep with this grand intention

Then wake in frustration

But still you breathe"

I LOVE that part of the poem most of all. Makes me realize others are like me, which is comforting. Glad i found you.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thank you for comment pjk_artist.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thanks for "finding" me Stan. I'm glad you liked this one.


Highvoltagewriter profile image

Highvoltagewriter 6 years ago from Savannah GA.

Wow so powerful...I find it hard to write though the tears...Thank you and God bless...


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Greetings Highvoltagewriter! I find tears and other strong emotions are the BEST to write through. Love and Light.


katrinasui profile image

katrinasui 6 years ago

beautiful Poem! Please keep going.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 6 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thank you katrinasui! I write tons, I guess I should post more of them.


Christoph Reilly profile image

Christoph Reilly 5 years ago from St. Louis

Hi Patricia. This was so touching, and it hits on a feeling that many in the world have faced as well, yet have not considered it in such poetic fashion. I challenge anyone to read this and not be instantly transported to a similar time in their lives.

I know exactly what you mean when you say that "tears are best" to write through. I find the same think.

My love to you, Patricia.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thanks for the comment Chris. This is something I guess all children go through if things go as they should. The only thing worse would be for the child to die before the parent.


Writing_Wine profile image

Writing_Wine 5 years ago from San Francisco Bay Area

Reading this and knowing the story behind....let's just say I have tears trickling down my cheeks. Beautiful release of emotion into words.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Ahhh, I'm glad you felt it WW.


AskAshlie3433 profile image

AskAshlie3433 5 years ago from WEST VIRGINIA

beautiful words patricia. love your poems.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thanks Ashlie I'm glad you liked this one.


RandomLife profile image

RandomLife 5 years ago from Nashville TN

This is so beautiful and emotional. It brings back so many memories for me.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Thank you RandomLife. I'm sorry it brings back memories though :(


RandomLife profile image

RandomLife 5 years ago from Nashville TN

That's ok. =) Some things are bitter sweet.


sligobay profile image

sligobay 5 years ago from east of the equator

No Pain more poignant; Patricia; than powerlessness over the passing parent. To cling or release is the usual dilemma but once released from life to have life cling is a strange scenario. Death be merciful.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

I learned that the vessel isn't as fragile as I thought. That grown men do scream and that Hospice workers are angels in disguise. Thanks Sligobay. He's at peace.


Joy56 profile image

Joy56 5 years ago

can you believe this is the first time i read you ....... your head does fit your other half, but i was very wrong, as per usual.


Patricia Costanzo profile image

Patricia Costanzo 5 years ago from Behind the Redwood Curtain Author

Well Joy, I'm glad you finally did. Hugs.

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