Master of Misery

Delving into the deep, dark dungeon, depression
creeps in, clinging tightly.
You are not alone; I am with you now
I will hold you tight and won’t let go.
I will squeeze the colour from your soul
and steal the love from your heart.
I am draining your mind of happy thoughts
and replacing them with my ruminating voice.
Can you hear my criticism?
Look into my eyes,
I need to take your sparkle.
Let me hug you tight so your muscles ache
and let me weigh you down.
I will hold you back from life.
I am depression; master of misery and creator of gloom.
I laugh in the face of happiness and light
and stamp all over love and joy.
I may leave you for a while,
but I will always come back.


The Blackbird

This is a poem I wrote as a young soldier 28 years ago while serving in the British Army. It’s not quite on the theme of mental health, but it represents the emotional impact that training had on me.

There it goes again: bang.
The blackbird killed.  In bloody war
there is no innocence, just death.

The wind is up.
Death grows. The heat is dancing
to the devil’s tune of screaming lungs

The dust settles, creeping, searching
moulding. Flesh is burning, melting
corroding. Pain is long forgotten.

Death is alive. Darkness
is the king. Time ticks on and on
to nothing, from nothing, going nowhere.

Photo of military cemetery

What It’s Like To Be Catatonic


Emptiness with no connection to the world. Sitting motionless,
Just head hanging silently in an ill-lit room, not seeing or hearing.
Just sitting in emptiness.

Pain without any feeling. Sitting motionless,
Enveloped in pain with no hunger or thirst, no hot or cold.
Just sitting in pain.

Intensity without having thought. Sitting motionless,
Driven to madness by the screaming noise in her brain; no rational thoughts.
Just sitting in despair of the intensity.

Screaming without making a sound. Sitting motionless,
Trying to scream, but prevented by a lifeless face.
Just sitting, trapped in a silent scream.

Exhaustion without being able to sleep. Sitting motionless,
Desperately exhausted, no energy, no life.
Just sitting, unable to sleep.

Drowning in tears without crying. Sitting motionless,
Drowning silently in a room full of tears.
Just sitting, unable to cry.

Death without being dead. Sitting motionless,
Sitting with death oozing from every pore.
Just sitting, unable to die.


Poem by me.

Photo credit: (c) Can Stock Photo

The Weight of the Pain



Reaching through the darkness, searching for light.
Nothing is visible, even though it’s not night.
Surrounded by emptiness squeezing her tight,
There is nothing to save her, no reason to fight.

The sick, thick, blacker than blackness envelops her,
twisting and squeezing, tugging and weaving.
Stopping at nothing, it weaves itself into every fibre of her being.
No cell is safe, no molecule untouched.
Muscle turns to lead and guts turn to stone.
Blacker than blackness is bleeding through bone.
Muscles tear when they try to move; the weight is too great.
The weight of the pain.
Too great is the weight of the pain.
Blackness spills from every bone.
Drip. Drip. Drip.
She sinks into the pool of blacker than blackness.
There is nothing to save her, no reason to fight.
But there is one last reach from a dying muscle,
feeling its way through the blacker than blackness.
Oh, the weight of the pain.
So great is the weight of the pain.

Reaching through the darkness, she finds the light
Everything is visible, even though it is night.
Surrounded by life, hugging her tight
There is love to save her, every reason to fight.


Poem by me.

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.