Iron Lung

I heard it first
when I was a little girl
before I understood

I looked down at my chest

fancied I could hear the whirring
of mechanisms

a cold release in every rest
the squeezebox rise and fall
of springs that sprung
from two iron lungs

wondered if my other organs
were built the same,
drew pictures of the biotech

a silver chest
beneath my dress

years passed, we had a laugh
at the way a child can think

how their open minds
paint a picture
without the need for ink

I see now how we are
too fragile to be composed
of anything but paper
and glass

bone and heart
a crack and tear, here and there

until we break apart