- Bipolar villanelle
- To a psychiatrist
- In remembrance
- Living on
- Drug death sonnet
- The drinker’s passion
Bipolar villanelle Such rhapsody is mine at last Yet not for long, my mind can tell, Pain and misery will hold me fast. Cruel melancholia is past, the grinding sorrow, darkened hell Such rhapsody is mine at last. But still I know with all the haste Of joy, that change will sound a knell, Pain and misery will hold me fast. This drama has me quite outclassed, despite the times when all is well Such rhapsody is mine at last. Soon complacent, then aghast By that returning vicious hell Pain and misery will hold me fast. My life would clearly be a blast Without bipolar’s nasty spell. Such rhapsody is mine at last Pain and misery will hold me fast.
Lithium Lithium! Element and traitor What do you do to me? but soothe my tongue, belie my mind. I see you stretching through the years at times abandoned white chalk hard What are you? A two-faced mask stealing feelings You take my happiness and laugh at it through tears. Metal, we are one. You have my joys, my sorrows, you make the night kind and the day that follows unremarkable.
To a psychiatrist To you, I am a brief moment, A problem, if not solved, then put aside. My anguish is interesting to you, But cannot touch you. To me, you are hope, You will say the forgotten words That will mend the frayed thread Of my existence. Trembling, I wait For what never comes. How can you say What you do not know? I look into a mirror And close the sides, And see green reflections, Endlessly.
In remembrance El-ec-tri-ci-ty Say it! Say it so you won’t forget but I will. White and gentle care and cotton hold my hand all forgotten. Which am I? Giver or Receiver? I never knew or cared. Counting back I never got there raising noise was all I heard. What matter was it? Grey transcended all my thoughts too late. Currents passed blankness stared I couldn’t see or know where I was then. Was this the place where I had been before? And where were you? You came because you knew I would forget. I am now as I was then better but forgotten.
Place Aching walls, their pictures gone, chilled by panes that will not close, and colours merged and smeared so far that none can tell what shades there were. A smell hangs in the air of all that’s passed, of food, of weed, old blood and piss, of squeezed-out shit and sorrow. A space that lingers, strains and breathes, and cannot understand what lets it live, or lets it strive once more. This will not do, this place that is our life, that we hold tight and love because we know that there is nowhere else. The walls remember worse, and I remember walls that were the same long years ago. The smells, the sights, that make us laugh and gag, Such shabby tragedies, the only breaks for fags. I live this place, I cannot see it as it is, but when I try to I am racked with shame, and all I am is shame.
Living on A flame in the flesh sears and holds that which looks away. The sea, the sky will never reach the voice which cannot speak. Douse that fire leave what is left of me to fate. A hand grips fast, from far away a voice speaks silently. A pilot flame burns on behind a darkened mesh. The fingers soften and leave The voice is lost in a choir.
Drug death sonnet The road was all awash with mud and slush when past the grim-faced doors we pushed our feet We knew why we had come, and through the mush we saw the one we sought wound by a sheet. We cared not for his fate, or how he died or who his mother was, or if he loved, all this was nothing to us, he had lied; Black lies that meant we stood with him and shoved him, when he drank that drink so still and green. He smiled a little then. His fear was not when he would die, or what his death would mean but dread of senseless suffering, withdrawal and of rot. The scent of death was on him, all the way Through life, and dying a relief that final day.
The drinker’s passion The wrench of cork and twist of screw, a rasping cry that calls and pulls and shows a future, shining bright, with hills of moving shadows. You sing to me of hope, and yet the beauty of your voice is warped, and shatters on the clear bright rock of youth, all soured by age. I can’t forget you. Never will the music of your coming fade within me; each little death, each time you leave, a vanishing of love. Cold glass between my hands, that clasp you close in hot embrace, you draw my lips to kiss you, and I sigh, and I am spent as you are. But your sisters gleam as maidens, and I leave you lying there. They smile and whisper, sing another verse to me. They are not beautiful, as you were, but they will do. In the dark their faces shine, by dawn, grown gnarled and black. I hear their voices, louder now, calling me back.
Melancholy This is the bed I lie on These are the sheets I don’t wash These are the clothes I don’t fold Those are the books I don’t read That is the mirror I don’t look in. There is the door I don’t open There is the sink I don’t wash in There is the food I don’t eat Those are the shoes I don’t walk in There is the door I don’t go through. These are the words I don’t speak These are the limbs I don’t move These are the feelings I don’t have These are the thoughts I don’t think That is the mirror I see no-one in.
Sour My mind is soured Like pickles caught in teeth Lingering past the taste And spreading doubt. I hate the cloak I wear Of clinging knowledge I hate the doubts I feel And they are me and you And you. No longer do I taste of milk Fresh and sweet and pure My thoughts are long fermented. I can never find it quite But the road to death Is paved with stones Cracked by uncertainty.