October 11, 2007
By Caitlin Graham, Des Plaines, IL

She smokes
It’s not pretty, nor is it fun,
For anyone in my family to see her this way.
The smell of the smoke lingers in the air
Like fog after a midmorning rain.
I feel bad
I feel sorry
But there never seems to be
Anything I can do.
There’s no use arguing
It will end up in a fight
And this world definitely needs more drama.

I’ve heard stories,
About Lung Cancer and death.
Makes me worried.
I wonder if it will ever hit her,
Like a softball into the catcher’s glove.

It hasn’t gotten bad
At least not for her
Not yet.
I wonder how she started
And if she plans to quit.

My grandmother, my nanny, my granddad too.
Aunts, Uncles and even cousins.
Have fallen into that horrible habit.
They fill their lungs with black, disgusting tar.
While the nicotine crowds their brain
Asking for more.
Filling, Filling until
A balloon with too much air
Lies useless and limp
Just like a lung clogged with tar.
That leaves it owner stuck on oxygen
For Life
It’s a cruel way to go,
A death sentence in a small package.
Because once you take that first breathe of it
You can never, ever stop.

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