Sponge in my mouth

Devil’s hand grasps my throat

Stomach fisted, drawn in

Like a sea anemone touched

Folded into itself

Sight blurred through tears welling

I woke, filled with dread as usual

Marshalling my misery into

The appearance of daytime normality

And thought if I could write this down

Channel it through my arm, fingers,

To pen and paper

I may be exorcised of my demons,

And the thought was comforting

My father was a depressive

I feel his genes ripening in me

Like the eyebrows sprouting upwards

As his did in Old Age.

But I have spent my life seeking

Self- knowledge, awareness, understanding

I have a toolbox he never had

To help fix the problem

Meditation, exercise,communication, altruistic acts

Understanding we ALL struggle

But these are tools to help me be strong

And maybe I just need to lay bare

My weakness

To say to you, I am Nothing

I am Empty.

I need holding

But like liquid, will slip

Through all the helping hands

And splodge onto the ground

Like a stinking dog’s turd.

Now I am getting gross

Revealing just how uncultivated I am

How foul my capabilities.

Poetry is supposed to refine the mind

The writer’s, the listener’s.

But I am not a writer

Not an artist

Just an old woman

Struggling to hold down

The bitterness and disappointment I do not deserve to feel.

Because I am Lucky

Capital “L” lucky

In the great scheme of things

The list of my good fortune

Could fill pages.

I have no right to self-pity

So guilt stacks up on these scales

Weighing my soul.