For Lucy

For my creative writing course I’ve been challenged to write an 8 line poem using only one syllable words. If you’ve ready very much of my stuff you’ll know why this is tragic for me lol.

I tend to be multi-syllabic and long winded. Overly descriptive. But I did my best.

The prompt he gave us, before telling us what we’d be using it for, was to write a matter of fact description of an event that is impossible. I wrote mine about going to brush my teeth in the morning, hearing a strange noise, and turning to notice my pug, Lucy, floating outside, licking the bathroom window pane.

To my Lucy

Pug so high in the sky.

Held in the wind.

How did you get there?

My pug in the sky.

 

Up where you should not be,

A grin from ear to ear.

Your nose print on the glass

Makes me laugh.

 

20 Facts

Inspired by Nick Flynn’s “Thirteen Random Facts”

  1. In most of my college courses, my grades have been lowered due to unexplained absences.
  2. Suicide was the known cause of death for 42,773 people in 2014 for the United States alone.
  3. The definition of suicidal ideation is “Thinking about, considering, or planning suicide”.
  4. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.
  5. There are two main forms of Bipolar Disorder: Bipolar I and Bipolar II.
  6. Cymbalta is a selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor. It is an antidepressant. They openly admit they do not know how it works.
  7. Cymbalta’s common side effects are as follows: constipation, diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness, fatigue, hypersomnia, insomnia, nausea, sedation, weakness, headache, xerostomia, agitation, erectile dysfunction, nervousness, psychomotor agitation, tension, vomiting, abdominal pain, anorexia, decreased appetite, decreased libido, loss of libido, hyperhidrosis, and restlessness.
  8. An overdose of the drug Sertraline can include bradycardia, bundle branch block, coma, convulsions,delirium, hallucinations, hypertension, hypotension, manic reaction, pancreatitis, serotonin syndrome, stupor, and syncope.
  9. Bipolar I is characterized by one or more manic episodes, or mixed episodes. Typically, a person will experience periods of depression as well. Bipolar I disorder is marked by extreme manic episodes that often involve compulsive sexual behaviors, extreme drug and alcohol use, and irresponsible spending behaviors.
  10. My family has a strong history of depression.
  11. Sertraline, or Zoloft, is used to treat depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, and premenstrual dysphoric disorder.
  12. I was diagnosed with severe depression when I was 15.
  13. Sertraline’s common side effects are as follows: rigid muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, fast or uneven heartbeats, feeling like you might pass out, agitation, hallucinations, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, feeling unsteady, loss of coordination, headache, trouble concentrating, memory problems, weakness and fatigue, dry mouth, decreased appetite, loss of libido, difficulty orgasming, insomnia, upset stomach, constipation, and weight gain.
  14. Bipolar II is characterized by one or more major depressive episodes and at least one episode of hypomania, with possible periods of level mood between episodes. The highs in Bipolar II, are not as extreme as those in Bipolar I, and therefore Bipolar II disorder is often misdiagnosed as major depression when hypomanic episodes go unrecognized or unreported.
  15. Lexapro is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor used to treat depression.
  16. Lexapro’s listed side effects are as follows: diarrhea, drowsiness, headache, insomnia, nausea, delayed ejaculation, anorgasmia, constipation, dizziness, dyspepsia, fatigue, decreased libido, diaphoresis, and xerostomia.
  17. For people with Bipolar II, the use of antidepressants without a mood stabilizer is commonly believed to increase suicide risk.
  18. Sometimes, I get a burst of energy and will clean, reorganize, and paint rooms in my home, all in one night, because I don’t feel like sleeping. Sometimes, I don’t need to sleep much for a couple days.
  19. I have overdosed three times at 19, 20, and 22. I am 27.
  20. Lithium Carbonate is a mood stabilizer used to treat bipolar disorder. It works to stabilize the mood and reduce extremes in behavior by restoring the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain.

It Wasn’t Her

We’d eaten enough candy to make a dentist cry in despair. Amongst our feet lay the crumpled and sticky remnants of candy long since devoured, stale kernels of over-buttered popcorn, and half empty soda cans. I’m sure it reeked, but we had long since gone numb to the smell, somewhere past 1 A.M, possibly before 3. It was spring break and, for me, this was as good as it got. I’d gotten all A’s in my classes, and that combined with my not viciously attacking the phlebotomist who came to take my blood during my appointment that morning had convinced my parents to provide us with a new video game, to go with our candy coma. I had a bit of a phobia, you see. Anything sharp and aimed at me kicked off a fit, of which I never remembered a thing. Nobody knew why. All I knew was the object, aimed and ready to hurt me. But the trials of that morning no longer mattered, as we geared up for another round of Smash Brothers, chased with Sprite and pixie sticks. What mattered was that her Kirby was kicking my ass. Round over and I had lost. I tore open another pixie stick to drown my sorrows, reached over to hand her one as well.

But she didn’t move.

And she didn’t speak.

Without acknowledgment, she stood up and went to the computer, sat down, got online. I knew better, but a caffeine high and little sleep creates a vortex of poor judgement, and I couldn’t stop myself from questioning her. Bugging her. But she didn’t move, and she didn’t speak, so I gave up and turned towards the couch for a solo game. I didn’t hear the chair slide back. I didn’t see her get up. I just felt a dull and sudden pain in my side that sent me toppling forward. I closed my eyes.  My head hit the coffee table, an ancient thing of gouged wood and glass.  I struggled to plant my hands to the floor, push myself up, but the room kept turning and I had to hold on to keep from falling away. I felt something sticky on my face. Eventually she spoke, and it was her again. I could hear her if I focused hard enough. She gasped and asked what happened.

And the room kept turning

She started crying and begged me to say something.

And the room kept turning.

And then, finally, she went for help.

Eventually, the room stopped turning, but I held on anyways.

Your Words

A child’s handwriting is one of the most distinguishable things in this world. It’s used in signs and advertisements, it adorns the halls of elementary schools and daycares. The tell-tale squiggles of a kid’s first foray into the written world convey so much about what it means to be a child.

When you first begin writing, each letter, painstaking crafted, sprawls across the page loud and undeniable. Each letter, massive in its own right. And why shouldn’t it be? You worked hard to put that image there. You were proud of that letter. Slanted and unsturdy, a child’s writing jumps off the page at you, screaming for you to acknowledge its importance. And it is important. Every child knows their words mean something.

When you first begin writing, sentences scroll along the length of a paragraph. Your words flow right off the edges pages force into your world, defiant of being crammed in such tight quarters. And that’s ok.

But then something strange begins to happen. Year after year, your writing begins to shrink. Those bold, proud, letters beaten down to size, pushed together and subdued by formatting. Crushed into something small and neat, something acceptable to the world around you.

Something professional.

And each year those letters shrink, so does your sense of how important they once were.

Your letters.

It all starts with those letters.

People all start out filled with the knowledge that they’re worth something. That their words are important and their thoughts, no matter how simple, vital to this world. We start out demanding our parents, our teachers, respect our job choices.

I WILL be a fucking princess, damnit!

Or a ninja.

They’re cool too.

But then those letters start to shrink, and the idea of proclaiming yourself to be destined for great and amazing things begins to feel shameful. Embarrassing. And the next time someone asks you what you want to be when you grow up, you know better. You say something real. Something sensible.

I want to be a lawyer.

or a teacher.

Those fantastical desires become something you laugh at, years down the line. Just like those scribbles, flowing right off the page. How silly of you, being proud of such chicken scratch.

And for the unlucky ones, the world squeezes in even tighter.

A lawyer? But, your grades aren’t that good. You’ll never be able to pay for school.

How could you possibly teach when you have so much to learn?

And those sensible desires, once fantastic, shrink down even further. Become something attainable.

I want to make a living wage.

I want to survive.

And before you know it, your words, your sense of worth, your feeling of invincibility…

All shrunk down, neat and tidy. Something easy to look at and understand. Something everyone can read without any difficulty.

Your writing can open doors or have you dismissed at one glance. Just like your face, your body, your clothes. Everything you choose to turn whats outside into a reflection of what’s inside is skewed based on what other’s might think. What others might expect. You can’t dress too loud, too provocative. It’s unprofessional. No one will take you seriously.

And you need people to take you seriously. Because if they don’t? What’s attainable becomes what’s impossible. What you need becomes what you don’t have.

And what you wanted? Well, what you wanted never mattered anyways.

I can’t just let you go down like this

Imagining the landscapes as your eyes see them

The contours of the world so blurred

It’s impossible to see the details,

the sparks worth living for,

the faces worth reaching out to touch.

Why do you sink so slowly, so serenely to the bottom?

With no fight left to breathe,

no will to reach forward and grasp,

you rest upon the bottom and sigh out,

knowing there’s nothing left to take in.

Imagining the clouds as you breathe them

hollowing out your chest to make room for the pain

Withering your bones to reduce your resistance

They settle on your chest.

no space

no hope

just passive permission to go

and never come back.

Imagining the hurt as you feel it

crisp and light,

settling on every surface of your skin.

Imagining all this I feel the anger you used to have,

the push to fight past it,

the need to defeat it.

Please, take this from me.

Borrow my anger and resistance.

Borrow the world through my eyes.

Let it crush me for awhile,

let it haunt me while I sleep.

Just take it,

long enough to remember why,

Long enough to understand,

I can’t just let you go down like this

and never get back up.

For Every Perfect Smile

Please look at me, and see

There’s the happy little family

and the cozy little home, but

for every perfect little smile there’s a perfect little cut.

 

Please listen to me, and hear

there’s the quirky attitude everyone holds dear

and the pretty little dance she does every afternoon, but

for every perfect smile there’s a perfect little cut.

 

Please hold me, don’t let go

there’s a reason my responses are coming so slow.

There’s the happy little family

and the cozy little home, but

For every perfect smile there’s a perfect little cut.

 

Please talk to me and be true

Because a lie  hurts her more than it does  you.

I move like I’m alive, and I laugh on cue, but

For every perfect smile there’s a perfect little cut.

 

And for every fake friend there’s a wound you can’t see

And every insult a tear in my seams.

And every love lost a hole in my heart

And hiding all this is tearing me apart

 

But I ask you to see

And I beg you to hear

I scream and shake and it’s just as I feared.

 

That as long as I smile

and as long as I laugh

you pretend not to hear

you may as well be deaf.

 

But look at me damnit

I’m standing right here!

I’m not going away and  neither will your fear

 

that one day the cuts will get too deep

and one day the dance will become a leap

and one day the attitude will just break down

and what are you going to do with me now?

 

because you act like you don’t know

and I pretend like it’s not me

but no matter how we try it’s just plain to see

 

There may be a happy little family

and a cozy little home

But none of that matters when it’s all said and done

because for every perfect smile there’s a perfect little cut

This is a door you can’t just slam shut.

 

You read lines like this and you push it away

Artistic freedom or some such you’ll say

but you’ll wonder why the lines switch from her to me

and I’ll wonder why you just refuse to see

that for every perfect smile there’s a perfect little cut

and I’ve done everything to beg for help

but…

Now you found someone else…

20121119-153129.jpg

20121119-153136.jpg

20121119-153142.jpgA small comic based off of my sister’s writing.

 

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