Pectoriloquy |

The Watcher FREE TO VIEW

Sarah Hartley, BMBChir
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Editor’s Note: Ms Hartley writes, “As a sleep physician I spend a lot of time reading polysomnograms. The poem is about one of my patients who had severe daytime sleepiness. The ‘click’ is the noise made by my mouse as I move from one page to the next on my monitor screen. I am an English trained physician living and working in France for the last decade. Writing keeps me in touch with my mother tongue.”

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.

Chest. 2012;142(6):1684. doi:10.1378/chest.12-0533
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Click: I am the watcher
My bright window into your night
Sees you slip down into slowness
Click: I am a fisherman
My net is woven around your thin face.
I look into the dark waters
Click: I am the hunter, stalking a shadow
Invisible by day. Come, show yourself
My trap is ready
Click: midnight. A flurry
swirls the waters of the grey sea, swimming near the surface
The unseen approaches
Click: Your shadow erupts.
His teeth bite into your night, tearing your sleep into bloody rags
From now until the pale morning he pillages, retreating to return
Click: I have caught him
I try to tell you that I have found a monster
That we can lure him down and sheathe his sharp teeth
But you are sleeping




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