Childhood Obsession

When I was young, I thought about
death, often. I was a worrier,
a stress-er, an oh no! what comes
next-er? Of course now I recognise
this was childhood anxiety which would
follow me through life, unreservedly.
But back then I truly believed
I was dying.

I’d pray to make it through the night,
to have one more chance at life.

I was around thirteen at the time,
too young to obsess about dying.
Yet it took over my life, some
nights I’d weep for hours before
finally drifting off to sleep.
Then wake at dawn feeling
like I had been reborn,
marvelling at my redemption,
mind full of promises:

to try harder, to live longer,
to, at the very least, die better.

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Wendy Pratt

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