I thought the best way to deal with hunger was to breathe; just let the sharp pangs of your gut soften and blur into Elaine Stamp. Poetry. 2013. background noise: inhale, exhale. I think of breathing as I sit next to you and when I tell myself That’s it, No more, I have lost my appetite— your eyes catch the light and the curve of your irises shine like the sun igniting burnished motes of sweet chocolate powder flicked into the air. Warmth tinders in my gut and suddenly I’m starving. I breathe, guzzling air like it’s my last drink on earth, inhaling a cocktail of water vapor, oxygen, nitrogen. Just breathe— breathe through the hunger, the gnawing snaps of want, of the bitter musk of what ifs that cling to the back of my throat like the sour burn of cheap wine. But it does nothing to slake the ache in my gut nor loosen the cramp of the muscle in my chest. I thought the best way to deal with hunger was to breathe and yet, here we are.
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