At Death’s Bed…

I wonder how long it will be until the darkness swallows me whole. I can feel it consuming me on the inside. Slowly trickling into every corner of my brain.

There’s no pain, none to speak of anyway.

There’s no remorse, none that matters anyway.

There’s no song, none to hear anyway.

All there is, except for that one small spot of light I can barely make out anymore, is the darkness. The sweet, comforting embrace of death that comes in slow, ragged breaths.


I watch him laying there. Barely breathing. The sound is the stuff that will haunt my nightmares in the days to come. A sort of gurgling, raspy, sucking noise. The only relief is in the fact that it is coming slower than before. Is that a relief? Is there something wrong with me in wanting it all to stop? How horrible of a person am I to even think something like that?

I want to be here for him.

He was there for me.

It’s only right to stay until he goes.

I hold his hand, leaning in close. I can feel the smell of death with each labored exhale. I try to hold my breath when he does.


It’s been awhile since he took his last breath. I wait for his wife to look at me and give me permission to check. She leans back. She knows he’s gone. A single tear rolls down her cheek as she lets out a long sigh.

I lean in and check.

His pulse is gone.

He is no longer here.

I lean over and touch her shoulder and smile. She understands the gesture as she smiles a weak smile back at me. I step out into the hallway and it takes my eyes a moment to adjust to the brightness. As they do, I take a deep breath.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Weaving the Threads.”

Published by

R. Todd

MFA from the Queens University of Charlotte ('21), BA in English from the University of Central Florida ('17), Group leader for the Florida Writers Association since 2019, member of AWP and ACES.

3 thoughts on “At Death’s Bed…”

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