I don’t often speak about this, but pain is an isolating enough darkness without meeting shame too. And I am more than just acoustics for this lacerating silence.

I am in another excruciating wait for answers on my widespread chronic and often severe pain. In the in-between space of illness without words to hold its form, it’s too easy to wrap yourself in panic, alternating feverish and frozen, wondering if it’s premature or sensible to start grieving dreams. I try not to visit the graveyard too often.

I love you. I have not forgotten you. But my bones seem to have forgotten how to leave the bed without hurting, and my mind is not always strong enough to collect them together and kiss them better long enough to leave the house. And sometimes, sometimes holding my body without hate is all today can hope for.

But if it needs fixing, then it is broken. And half my life in this bruising duet, I’m not sure what part I’m singing. Because when I close my eyes, and look for my edges, I find my head, torso and limbs, my whole body knows itself by where the aching meets the air. So if somehow I bury it, and we’re so synchronized, will I disappear when life no longer hurts? Am I the shadow or the shape?

Oh these ghosts don’t sleep, they accompany, this chemical dance of diagnoses. I limp the barren triangle – kitchen bathroom bed, repeat.

So always read the label, because hope comes in child-safe bottles, and take only as directed by the pharmacy of choreographers.

Now my fingers trace over all the gaps in my music, but I’ve given up on playing along. When you’re composed around black holes, how much longer till you’re just…(gone?)

No. I am tired. I am angry. I am sad. But I am here. I might not be here in every way this world wants me to be, or every way I wish I was, but I am here. And right now that’s enough. I am learning. I am learning I am enough.

This, love

I love you more from far away
Distant enough not to absorb you
Knowing if it is my pain
or just proximity to a wound
Not steering my dreams
around your silence

I love you more close up
Near enough to never lose you
Where my gills breathe
your salted losses
My wings revere
your laughter

I love you most just here
Between this moment’s
crest and trough
Nourishing our oceanity
Here we are
always enough

The tilting of time

I often think
about depression
and anxiety
and the sensation of time
The feeling that
at some point
your mind tilted the future
And now
it presses down
on your chest
the whole lot of it
all at once
and my god
it’s no wonder
you cannot breathe
But the thing
to try and see
and it will be hard
there is no doubt
is that you don’t
have to do it
all at once
The future
is just
a lungful
at a time
and out
and out
You couldn’t breathe
it all at once
no matter how much
you wanted to
no matter how much
you try
It won’t feel easy
tilting your mind back
to just a lungful
of the future
But the thing
about life is
It’s very much
like breathing
the ups and downs
are the way
that it works