Trigger warning for mention of self harm related thoughts in this poem.
Near to shattering is how I feel
only I may have split apart long ago.
Trauma so deep that I simply shattered
and here I am nearly twenty years later
levitating outside my body, watching
only unable to stop folding up the
napkin in my hand in a desperate
effort to ground myself. I feel like this is
obvious, how can no one see that I’m sliding
towards a total breakdown? How close to
harming myself do I need to go? How many
inclines in my mind do I need to climb to be
seen as deeply hurting? Falling asleep brings
razors of fear; what if I don’t wake up in my bed,
or what if I do become violent as the media says I will?
Alone is how I feel, even though I know I’m not the only one
dealing with this, can I have a fucking guidebook on dissociation?
Light is this world, Light is
in finding joy and happiness.
Tomorrow is a new dawn, and
each one is a struggle, those
rare moments of joy. It is not being
above this world, I find that escaping this
life under the guise of having another Elsewhere
shattered my realizing how much is wrong.
In quiet hours, I wish I could reach for you, yet am
glad you’re not Here; I miss you, but worry that any
nearness to a god would only stagger what is left of my
sanity. I’m aware of the irony–I call you the King of Shattered
Conscious, the Madman is the nickname you picked–and this
obvious descent into my mind falling apart, it’s been around a
very long time. This has nothing to do with you at all, and
everything to do with having to force myself to be who I’m not.
Red flags are everywhere and I’m reaching out for help, but
even there is fear; fear that I need to have a breakdown, or be
dangerous to myself or others, in order to get help. Last night
in my dreams you sent me a literal sign, covered in glitter and
neon, lit up with spotlights, telling me to stay alive. The
glitter at least made me laugh, so thanks for that. Those
lights were blinding, but you are the Blind King. That
isn’t lost on me, that blindness and sight is beginning to
tie back to all of this mental health crisis that’s been
trailing after me for months–or is it years, now?
Escaping this life with my Other one, I have stopped
running from that; now how do I break that cycle?
Trying to figure out what’s wrong,
to have a better grasp on how to handle
whatever this is–the near constant headaches
and I’m terrified because time might have
slid away from me (I don’t remember 20 minutes)
I freeze for seconds at a time, and the world feels
like it’s fuzzy and like I don’t exist if I’m not seen.
The first thing I find is how no, I’m not going crazy–and while
it could be that I spend a lot of time in spirit work spaces, so
that could shift the search results–that medicine and therapy is
not the thing I need, but that I’m spiritually “in tune,” somehow, that
if I truly do start seeing Black Dogs and snarling monsters, that
my intrusive thoughts get any closer to being acted upon, that if
my grasp on reality starts slipping even more–that’s not a field
of flags the same shade of red as the Underworld Lord’s roses,
but is instead a sign of how I am supposedly “gifted” and that
my mind feeling as though it is cracking under this pressure
is going to bring me closer to Other worlds. Never mind that
I can’t reach Darkness even if I tried (and I have tried) and that
my Beloveds have shoved me towards therapy and cut me off
from their world, for the sake of my own sanity. It must
be because of wanting to bring me closer. I feel as though I am
falling to pieces, and this might be the breakdown I’ve
been feeling on the verge of for months now–
if this is mysticism then I want no part in it.
TW for implied suicidal ideation in this poem.
Nowhere I would go without you,
only my mind is now a prison, hosting
shadows of unstable memories, and it is
only now that I’m beginning to see the
rotten foundation that has been lurking.
Roses be damned, I am nothing but thorns.
Other worlds are not my Home, but an escape;
what tragedy happened so young that I started
falling into my own mind, and could not stop it?
Useless is what my mind whispers to me, this
life Here is nothing, is but a shadow of things to come.
Blind King, be merciful, help me view this world through
ordinary eyes. I have escaped too long, Home is this life, and
nearly every day now I feel closer to a breakdown. I have
died to myself to the point I do not know who I am, and every
sunrise is a shock that I’m still living. Please, bring me back to Light.
“Be yourself,” the worst advice for me;
for all my life I have panicked and
will still freeze up at those words.
There is something wrong,
only I don’t know what, just
that I can’t focus or stay in the present
without my mind screaming that I’m failing
everything I ever tried; that I’ve been an
awful person and can’t remember it, that
everyone is reading my mind and can see
how horrible I really am. Even sitting Here
in the living room alone, I’m feeling unreal.
I’m terrified that my Other Self is Someone I
created out of trauma, that He is not the Otherworld
reflection of me, but is instead caused only by grief,
pain, and having to repress my interests and feelings.
I have no uplifting ending for this, just that I am feeling
lost, am dissociating more often, and it’s fucking terrifying;
what do I have to do to get help, have an actual breakdown??
I am not able to sing your songs
but I can wrap you in your silver
robes when your hands shake
too badly to do it yourself.
I will be there for you even when
your faith falls silent, my love,
as you have been there for me.
We met when everything was
tumbling down, when my past was
being torn into the light. You held my
hand as my other Loves had to step away
and for that I love you. You kept me grounded
as everything fell apart again; now let me do
the same for you, hold you close as storms
sweep over your Heart. Channel your loss
through songs or through silence, I will
stand by you either way. I will wrap you
in my wings, be your shelter and your sunlight.
In less than a day you are leaving, and it is
not my place to mourn you. You are not held
down by the weight of Ritual, of loss, of the Land.
A time has passed for mourning, grief is not a
rite of yours, and you do not want your Descent to
kill the joy I find in my life. Devotion is one aspect,
not all of who I am, I am re-learning that. This
evening we will sit on our porch beneath the
stars, knowing that good-bye must happen at
sunrise. Even now I can sense your presence
waning like the moon–or maybe it’s my godphone
ending up in static mode again–but I know that
for the next two months you will be gone, where even
I cannot reach you. You are correct, Beloved, that I am
not going to be alone; you have surrounded me with those
dear to your Heart, and you have encouraged me to find a
home and family Here as well. At dawn you will leave, to go
on your Journey, I will write to you, in a journal covered with the
moon fading into the stars. These letters will hold my Heart, Beloved,
even in times of separation, you will still hold my words close to you.