Reading

I sit alone on the sofa
a book open on my lap
my passport to somewhere else
I don’t know where my reality lies
Is it in the bright spring sunshine
outside my window
or is it among the shadows
that fill my mind?
The shadows blot out the sun
like the shadows
of gathering storm clouds
thunder rumbles across an empty plain
where I stumble and crawl
Is it less real
because it is in my mind?
Who can say
which is right
and which is wrong
and so I escape into
someone else’s words
someone else’s
imagined reality.

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The fall

Heel to toe, heel to toe
arms outstretched
carefully treading
the edge of the precipice
To one side, normality,
lies and false smiles
and hiding
To the other, the fall
into total darkness
I should be afraid
but instead
I long for the fall,
the need is so strong
Insanity waits for me
at the bottom of the abyss
What is madness
but a letting go
of all the pretences,
a laying bare the pain
for all to see
I am so tired
of defending myself
from those who only glimpse
and want to erase
my dis-ease
with pills and platitudes.
They tell themselves
they help people
but they cannot look
at the mirror of
anyone else’s pain
in case it reflects their own.
My truth is pain and fear
screams and bad dreams,
shame and hate.
Look at me if you will
and see that I am
just like you.
Come fall with me
and embrace my madness.
In the world of the sane
I am alone.

Oblivion

Little plastic pot

of treacle sleep

killing my emotions

until I am dead inside

for days

and months

and years

how much time

did they steal from me?

Never fully awake

never capable of protest

never able to say “No”

Stop, don’t do this to me

you can’t cure me

by killing me dead

by taking away

everything that makes me

human

they didn’t listen

they didn’t give me

any choice

they controlled,

I slept.

How is this cure

any different

from the sickness?

 

Depression

what is this fearful restlessness?
sitting immobilized all day,
reading or writing
or just thinking
but my whole being
suffused by a feeling of
constant motion
and frustration
I can’t make myself get up
and do anything
I am waiting
for what? I do not know
can anything happen
that will break me out of this
agitated state of mind?
I wonder if this is my life now
has everything I used to love
gone forever?
day after day I wait for it to be
better tomorrow
but tomorrow never comes
and nothing changes
but my body
growing weak and soft
from inactivity
and panic rises
at the thought
of everything left undone.
In moments of clarity
when I can see beyond
the end of the sofa
I ask myself
how did I get so lost?