Can I Breathe?

by Tedria Smith

They want my advice, but I don’t have any. They want
me to listen to their stories and respond. They want
to call me at random times. They want my attention. They want
to feel special. They want gifts. They want love. They want
me to work hard. They want me to adjust to time. They want
money. They want rides. They want me too much. They won’t
leave me alone to myself.

I cannot guide you. I cannot advise you. I have no advise for myself. I cannot
hear you. I don’t want to listen. I cannot give feedback. I don’t acquire a care. I cannot
answer. I don’t want to pick up. I cannot give you my attention. My mind is elsewhere. I cannot
make you feel special. I do not wish to. I cannot give you gifts. You don’t really need them. I cannot
give love. I am numb. I cannot work hard. I am restless. I cannot adjust to time. Time flies. I cannot
give away money. My money is for me and I am broke. I cannot give rides. I have no gas. I have nothing
left to offer. I want to be alone. When can I be alone? When can I be at peace? Can I breathe now?
Can I breathe?

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