This isn't like the animals. With them, you lie still and try not to heave
and try not to shudder
and try to bleed, stain the snow and lie still. That is the only way they will leave you alone, with the animals it's not about dignity but survival.
With you (and you and you and you), with you it's about survival with dignity. And for this, I must move, keep walking, miss maybe one beat but never two, not falling, wavering but not collapsing, move, and pretend I am still able to breathe.
With the animals, there is nothing involved but claws and torn flesh, with you there is nothing involved but everything and the way I keep moving on, bent but not broken.
Just walk, carry on, move - breathe and pretend I am still getting air, slow and steady so as not to crumble, smooth and steady so as not to show fear: move, breathe, distance.
Then I can collapse.