Numb

I walk the world asleep these days.
Wandering aimless about my work,
Listing from one senseless moment to the next
Until it is time to lie down to wait for dawn.

When daybreak comes, I take my daily anesthetic
And forget how to feel the world around me.
I cannot let the outside in; it might prove too much.
I can only focus on so much pain in each moment.

The hurting is the only thing I feel today,
And even that might prove overmuch
For my already weakened state
From tiredness and ever-longing for you.

We say Some Day and it relieves the pain–
Temporarily. Until I remember that Some Day
Was once Yesterday, or Last Month,
And now even Next Month is uncertain.

When will Some Day be Today, oh love?
To ask you is unjust, for we neither of us know
What tomorrow holds, or what holds the year–
The year with all its empty promises.

So I choose pain over apathy as a last resort
For I need to feel something when I say “love”.
Pain is a reminder of what I do not have–
Temporarily–until we reach Some Day.

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Love Not True

It’s easy to fall in love–
Too easy as I’ve found.
One look, the briefest touch,
Is all it takes to fall all over again.

I know its causes too well:
It’s those big doe eyes in hazel or blue;
It’s the silk-smooth hair, worn long;
It’s the blush, the meek smile, the lingering eyes.

But these are only the beginning stage.
I cannot tell how it transforms
From innocent attraction to protective desire–
A wish to be possessed and to call another “my own”.

These loves cannot all be true,
Though each ending has torn at my heart.
Someday, love will be restorative,
And love will patch together these broken pieces.

Nails

Willfully, obstinately, disobediently did I behave:
As a scornful servant or traitorous son.
I, an Edmund unto myself, sought my own delight,
And, unwilling to deny appetite, denied greater things.

Loving and loved–love found without seeking
Arrived unannounced, but suddenly.
Whirlwind passions swept through in torrents
Of romance, of tenderness, of devotion.

But, oh, to what end! Unforeseen and unimaginable:
I, the betrayed, struck by disgust and pain,
Even while the stripes left on my skin
Became reminders of my own betrayal.

The nails that tore my back and arms
Left scars and stained my body,
Yet the nails driven into Another
Graciously cleansed me of all my sin.

Not What You Seek

To the girl who cannot love,
I know not what to say
to ease the pain, erase the ache
Of love you lost in former days.

A tragic figure carved here,
Bitten by the sting of life,
Not despondent, just downhearted,
A chary girl, twice as shy.

Cautious, yes, but not too lost
For liveliness and gaiety;
Are these your shield and succour
‘Gainst the self: alone, not lonely?

What painted lips essay to cover,
Reveals itself in joyless eyes;
The shroud: effect, not the purpose,
I will not say your smile lies.

Your lips tell a truth of their own:
A defiant will against this ‘life’,
Though the word is indefinable,
Like the love one day you hope to find.

Can you grasp that wispy form,
Or claim a land that has no border?
Then what hope did you ever have
Of your hunted prey to corner?

Are you sure, this love, you’d recognize,
If it found you out tomorrow–
A fire, ablaze in truest form,
Mixed of grace and hope and sorrow?

I’ve seen a depth of love before
No mortal man could ever reach,
And found myself lost in rapture,
Quiet before the mercy seat.

Those feelings lost, which you now grieve,
Could have never quenched your heart–
A heart that’s known some loss and pain,
Affairs of friendships torn apart.

But there is love not to be found;
This is love that seeks for you,
Finding you where you are now,
But redeems and cleanses, too.

So I cannot hope you find
Everything you’re looking for,
But I pray that you receive
The love I’ve known that’s so much more.

Misery Loves Company

Three new poems-on-a-theme coming your way:

Misery Is a Quiet Companion
Misery is a quiet companion.
She does not compete with other emotions–
Content to wait her turn
For a place by my side.

Neither of us say a word;
We don’t have to.
There is no eye contact either;
It isn’t necessary.

Misery knows how I feel,
And she knows what I need.
Misery loves company,
And I love misery.

Hold Me Close
You kept a seat open for me.
I fall into it with relief.

You put your arm around my shoulders.
I lean my head into the space under your chin.

Silently, I work through the thoughts in my head.
Still, you hold me and say nothing.

Involuntarily, I shudder in the cool darkness.
Instinctually, you pull me closer and warm me in your embrace.

Tears begin to well in my eyes,
But at a whisper from you, they recede.

The quiet of the room calms me;
The emptiness around us relieves my mind.

All around us there is silent space–
Even next to me where you sit.

I understand there’s no one really there–
I sit alone with Misery.

I, Misery
Misery loves company because Misery is selfish.
Misery, when it falls, will drag others down.
Misery has the face of a friend but the hands of an enemy.
Misery doesn’t care if you fail, but it hates to watch you succeed.

But I am Misery; entirely and wholly, it is me.
Given the chance, I will trip your feet and hold you back.
I long for you to fail–for success to elude you as it has me.
Do not trust my lying eyes; my embrace is selfish.

All this in search of a companion–one who understands my pain.
Misery doesn’t just love company, I need it.
I crave someone’s acknowledgement of my torment
Even as I try to fight off the Jekyll controlling me.

And when I succeed, when the torment has passed,
I find Mr. Hyde, myself, lying on the floor in a straitjacket.
Having done no harm to another, he is pleased;
But finding himself alone, he is struck by his isolation.