The Conversation Killer

by Judith A. Lawrence

He speaks thunderously loud,

loud enough to drown out

what I might try to say.


If I speak in a breathless rush

it's only so I can complete a thought

before it's caught midair,

swallowed up in one gulp

and spit out. 

I stand corrected once more.


And still I try to speak,

if for no other reason than

to let the words fly free

before they choke me.