Are you Okay?

Written by Jill Paton


“Are you okay?” They ask

Am I okay?

Well I’m still breathing if that’s what they mean

Blood still pumps around my veins, carrying the air that is forced in and out of my lungs, pushed around by my still-beating heart

See my body still works, which I suppose is some sort of poetic irony

Considering I am completely broken


I wonder if one day I will turn to dust

When the tears streaming like rivers down my cheeks run dry

And the ocean inside me becomes a lifeless desert

A broken watch lying in the sand stuck on quarter to 6

A crack on the face, just like the crack in my heart that might as well have stopped beating when yours did


Half of me died with you that day, and the other half is drowning along with it

Gasping for breath as I struggle to stay above the surface

Tell me, how can I stay afloat when my life jacket turned into an anchor?

A chain wrapped around that fourth finger like a wedding band

Dragging me into the dark depths of the water to a place where I no longer recognise myself


All I know how to do is cut deeper wounds

I’ve never known how to heal

And I know truly that nothing will ever ease this ache

Maybe a bridge or a train but that only furthers the cycle of pain

And no more

No more


“Are you okay?” They ask

Am I okay?

“I’m fine”

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