lugubrious goo

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1 7 24 lugubrious goo

As a child when I was sickly my mother used to lather my chest with vapour rub.

The sheen of white gel smelled like the disinfectants at the pool of the YMCA.

The sheet stuck to me as I tossed and turned

and in the coarse drawl of my breath I could hear voices in a squeaky timbre from my congested lungs.

I was fascinated by the whispers

I breathed deep just to hear the rattle.

My mother said my chest was my weakness.

Back when I popped acid like cough candies I smoked over three packs of cigarettes on a sixteen hour trip.

My fingers turned orange and my tongue turned green

and the chest rattle reappeared with a vengeance, my mind and body filled with a nasty lugubrious goo.

At eighteen my doctor told me if I kept it up I’d be dead by thirty-five.

I made some changes

but this chest cold I’ve had of late brings back some old memories

and a bit of that lugubrious goo.