It became a leeching extension of hands
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clutching at ragged breath in a withered chest;
serpentine death grip, meandering head trip,
a wracking cough in the dead of night.
Looking a fright, skin pale and bright
with shining beads of determination:
rocking the shivers in foetal position,
existing minute to endless minute.
Unyielding to daily temptation
throughout the arduous journey to emancipation:
blackened marionette no longer,
a will of iron now forged stronger.
Nothing, in the end, but a murderous friend.