Lonely, Dark Night

And if one day you can’t find
a single star in your black night,
’tis only due to their eclipse
by your own beatific light.
Come one morning upon waking
you’ll find that life’s unsteady shaking
cast up diamonds in its wake;
And ‘twixt their birthing and your death,
when all the world held its breath
the Master quietly brought forth
His own Soul for you to take.

*I generally dislike rhyming poems but for some reason this one was birthed in my mind and I didn’t fight it.

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Perceptions

This poem was inspired by Sabrina Benaim’s “Explaining My Depression to My Mother.” all I had to do was to leave the car, but my hands froze,and my heart beat faster and fasteruntil terror rose above melike a boat facing a threatening wave until the wave capsized the boat,and my breath stuck in my chest […]

via Social Anxiety — An Alien at Sea

Sometimes it’s just easier not to share things with people who are committed to misunderstanding you. I read a quote once that read, “I stopped explaining myself when I realized people only understand from their level of perception.”

One of the most bizarre experiences I had dealing with depression is when I had to explain to a close acquaintance of mine why I was unable to attend an event with her one evening. I told her my monsters were incredibly fierce that day and I didn’t have it in me to be brave and face anyone else. Her response was, “Oh man, you’re still depressed?!”

How do you explain brokenness to someone who has never experienced it for themselves? It’s like trying to explain the color blue to someone who has been blind all their life. Inevitably, there comes a point where you just stop trying to make people understand.

The Day I Was Jealous

It caught me unaware, seeing you standing there in the parking lot, talking to her. I had finally decided to call it quits on our relationship, and this time I had made up my mind that it was going to be the last time. I thought I was prepared for it too, as our back and forth had worn me down to my very bones. But leaving the store that evening, I was not expecting to look up and see you standing there looking so put-together in your snug blue jeans and my favorite grey hoodie.

I quickly blended into the shadows and cursed myself as I stopped and watched your interaction with her take place. She had said something that made you laugh. My breath hitched and I couldn’t tear my eyes away from your face as every familiar emotion played across its surface. The way your brown eyes became soft and crinkled at the corners before your husky laugh rolled like sweet molasses out into the chilly evening air. I watched her place her hand on your arm and noticed that you didn’t shrug it off. You were still looking at her with that soft smile—the smile that was only reserved for me when you were being incredibly indulgent with whatever shenanigans I had gotten us both into.

Closing my eyes and taking several deep breaths, I quickly got into my car and pulled into the busy traffic, letting autopilot take over. Feeling something steadily drip off my chin, I swiped my hand across my face and realized I was crying.

Burn

As Sodom and Gomorrah burned,
So let memories of us burn
in this searing blaze
hungry for our pictures and every thought of you.
Let it burn away your lingering taste
and all the honeyed lies that flowed
like dripping nectar from your lips.
Let these raging flames burn hotter
than the fire in my blood
during all those stolen moments lit
with colliding lips and teeth,
and promises that never came to pass.
So let this fire burn
In the way that you and I could not—
a brightly shining star
that was never ours to wish on.

A Box Full of Darkness

Depression will often make you believe that you want to die, when what you are really craving is to feel alive. There have been so many times over the years that I desperately wanted to put an end to my misery and I mistakenly thought that looked very much like suicide. I couldn’t find my way out of the darkness and pain I had fallen into—yet my overwhelming desire to end it all was a response to my inability to obtain life and joy from everything that used to bring me fulfillment.

I would gaze in bewilderment at the people around me, going about their everyday lives, and I would scream at them internally, “Don’t you feel it?! Don’t you feel the disaster of my existence, the utter annihilation of my very soul? How can you not stop and stare in shock and horror at the destruction of everything I once was?” I was bleeding out my very essence into the universe and yet no one had the slightest clue. They blithely kept on living while my life had come to a sudden and unexpected halt.

Being on the outside looking in engraved some of the most brutal lessons into my shattered soul. Mainly, how important it is to notice the people around you. Not just their outward appearance or the expressions painted on their face—but to really see the person underneath. Being forced to a complete stop in a world that constantly rushes forward at the speed of light showed me how often I would trample over people in my climb to the top—never once noticing or even caring if my actions hurt someone in my rush.

Learning the simple act of kindness came with a terribly steep cost and one I am loathe to ever have to learn again. But unexpectedly, I was also left with invaluable gifts that could not have been obtained in any other way than making my way through that darkness.

darkness

Memories

Arrested, you stand still as a familiar feeling grips you.
A well-known scent, the flirtatious laughter of a passing couple,
and you find yourself drifting slowly into her memory.
Like gliding into your favorite pool of water on a hot summer night,
the sky a black velvet blanket with diamonds strewn haphazardly across.
Whispers of lovers drift past your ears as her laughing green eyes tease you with their depths.
The love in her burning brighter on those nights than all the stars combined.

Ink Hearts

It only took a moment
of vigorous scrubbing under the flow of water
for any trace of me to disappear from you.

Why was your soul imprinted on my heart
when mine was nothing more than
black ink strokes upon your skin?

*This poem was inspired by a Word Prompt from Heartstring Eulogies.

Unrequited

It tastes of the river.
Bones rattling in the empty darkness
Echo in the stillness of her ribcage.
Restless; you stare into the stormy night,
Imagine bodies falling from bridges.

A light footfall and the sound of indigo
Blend into the subway. It spills its secrets
To the dark tunnels
As women rush by
Exposing wrists–haggard and drawn
As the worn grey scent of money.

You move your fingers over her spine
And think of lightning.

Broken Clocks

You frighten me.

When you ask me for things like friendship,
companionship,
a night on the town.

An invitation thrown carelessly,
like a pebble in the water,
as you walk away without a care in the world.

As you walk away without realizing
that I am made of glass
and a misplaced throw may shatter this perfect illusion
of my reality.

I tighten my grip as anxiety roars to life
and settles on my shoulders with its familiar cold embrace.

“I’ll be there,” I whisper
Because I’d hate to disappoint you with my silence,
my absence,
my mysterious disappearances.

But I breathe in and swallow my fear
because even a broken clock
tells the correct time every once in a while.

Invisible

Invisible in a world full of molds,
We search desperately for someone who will see us–
Beneath the masks, beneath the facades, beneath the uncertain smile.
Will today be the day that someone will finally take notice of me?
Hear my words, look into my soul,
Acknowledge the small flame of my existence?
Will you be the one to stop by for a moment,
And warm your hands briefly by my fire?
To let me know that for a moment in time,
I was not alone in a world full of molds.

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