Off the Shelf, Poetry Thursdays
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like breath in our lungs
we do not notice it
until it is gone

pressing stethoscope to chest
trying to hear everything
all the words left unsaid

there are days when shoulders ache
from the weight of
restrictions, obstructions
escalating until it feels like
lungs collapsing

dead space, wasted time
when I look back on my life 
will I see that I’ve spent it
on things that will disintegrate
dissolve and dissipate

but like surfactant, you keep me
breathing, keep me going
the help I need in persevering
reminding me to give thanks each day
for the breath in my lungs
the oxygen in my airways

let me take a moment
to be here in the present
breathe in,
breathe out,
and start again

Poetry Thursdays is an initiative that highlights poems by medical students and physicians. If you are interested in contributing or would like to learn more, please contact our editors.

Anna Delamerced Anna Delamerced (12 Posts)

Contributing Writer

Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University

Anna Delamerced is a fourth-year medical student at Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island class of 2021. She graduated from Brown University with a Bachelor of Arts in public health. She enjoys writing poetry and is passionate about advocating for kids as a future pediatrician.