The Respiratory System
Papini had a colorful literary career, writing collections of poetry and an essay titled If Dante Were Alive. I found the aphorism above in a book of medical quotations (reading these collections is one of my vices) and attempted to find its exact source and context. Although my quest for why Papini penned these words was unsuccessful, I decided to use the quotation anyway, apologetically citing the secondary source. But, after all, breathing is what the respiratory system is all about, and any patients with acute asthma or pulmonary edema would likely agree that, for them, normal breathing is their greatest wish. And as a favorite adage of medical students reminds us, air goes in and out, blood goes round and round, and urine runs downhill.