Flicker

Content warning: self-harm; suicidal thoughts

Just a flicker of pain to remind me I’m still human.

So that I can breathe in a world where I’m trapped underwater,

Drowning in the air that won’t enter my lungs fast enough.

Remember I’m someone’s friend, sister, daughter.

Remember I’m not alone, not the only person living.

Remember that I have to keep going,

Without anyone knowing that this is what it takes for me to feel

A hint of the smallest feeling. Something. Anything.

A flicker of reality in a flicker of pain

So I can be part of normality again.

The somehow

Brings me back to the here and now

To remember that the world hasn’t stopped turning –

It never stops turning.

Forever and a second pass in a minute,

Running without moving –

I’m not turning with it.

Left light years behind those that surround me.

Still trying to swim in the emotions that drown me.

Feeling nothing and everything at the same time,

And I don’t have the power to silence the noise

That is always screaming in my mind.

Even the loudest laughter and the busiest songs

Never manage to keep me distracted for long.

My head’s filled with static, 

The unbearable drone of a flatline that won’t end,

Won’t silence, won’t stop, won’t leave me be

No matter how much I beg, scream, plead

I can’t breathe until it stops,

And it won’t stop until I break and give in,

And accept my weakness and inability to gain control of myself.

I can feel the scraping on my scalp, my hands itching to tear and rip the hair out my head

Tantalising, torturous temptation.

I want to dig my nails into my skull to kill whatever refuses to shut up.

But there is no single source of noise.

Unreachable. Untouchable.

The quietest corners of the world call to me,

Welcoming me to insanity with open arms

That I have to reject.

Perfect places for my pieces to crumble

But I’m not ready for the rest of the world to hear my screaming.

After all, I swear I’m doing okay. 

I’m just tired from the hours of sleep that didn’t stay with me.

Stressed from the stresses everyone else is stressed about,

Not the ones existing solely in my own mind.

Even the mundane normalities of everylife exhaust me.

It drives me to near insanity, 

That I can’t seem to cope on my own

Without a flicker of pain,

A harmless harm to bring me back

To the world everyone else is living in but I’m not.

I’m on a different planet, trapped in my own bubble

But I can’t run away

How can I escape from the world in my head?

Sometimes I think I would be better off dead

If it meant finally being able to give up, be done with it all.

But even that option is impossible because I Don’t want to die

So I choose entrapment.

Photo courtesy of Hans Vivek

Categories: Poetry

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