Posted: June 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

CONTEXT: March, 2011

I talked about it here.

Not a lot to add, since that gives the background on writing the poem.

I performed it for the first time at the Dusty Owl Anniversary Show. The reaction from the crowd led me to think the piece was better than I had thought.

This past weekend at the Capital Slam Finals, I had it as one of my four prepared poems and decided to do it in the second round.
Some people told me after that they were touched by it. That was nice.


The silence of a house
Full of little sounds –
Each one a mystery of
Unnamed threats.
The bed is cold and barren –
Her place not abandoned,
Just not occupied
As opportunity keeps us
The hour approaches 3
And sleep seems a
Memory from another lifetime,
A lifeline tethered loosely
Attaching me to a
Drifting cloud covered in
Sheep steeplechasing in the dark.
I start placing bets
But I lose interest
As my mind won’t leave
Me a loan.
My collateral is no good,
It is all damaged goods
From brainstem to stern
And I get that sinking feeling.
Everything is heavier in the dark.
I try writing poetry in my head
But it is all so morose
And the pages too porous
As they soak up my tears.
Sticks and stones
May break my bones
But a broken heart
Really hurts
As I fabricate
Reasons why she isn’t coming home.
Minutes pass
And the illogic of it
Stings like a rubber band
To the neck
But the weight sits
Like a brick
Never to be thrown
As I can’t find
A good enough reason
To be angry.
The curse of the self-aware
Is that all of your paranoia
Is laid bare.
And you can’t even
Revel in irrationality.
No weekend benders
That let you forget
Since there is nothing
Worth remembering.
There is a difference
Between sadness and
As one has no easily identifiable
Reason to prop up on a
Painter’s easel
To wallow and overcome.
Without reason it is so
Much worse.
Just like those who
Listen to the blues, and smile.
You are doing it wrong!
There is nothing worse
Than trying to fix
Something unbroken –
But you feel broken.
Hairline cracks across your skin
Behind your eyes and
Through your heart
As you hold it together
With habit and hope,
Watching out for that one
Sharp smack that will
Shatter illusions of wholeness.
If confidence was something
You could see mine would
Still be invisible
Or pushed aside by the
Spectre of failure,
Mostly imagined
But things are larger in
The dark.
I can hear them
Talking behind my back.
The voices coming
Through the walls and
Settling over me like a Halifax fog,
Full of sound and fury
Signifying whatever my
Animal brain insists upon.
Don’t ask me –
I just work here –
It is the fear that’s
Still in charge.
It lets me out during the day
But now it is approaching 4
And the day is far away.
I just wait and try
To forget
And try to remember
What it feels like
To be loved.

  1. […] by writing some poetry. I started with a piece dealing with the specific problems I was having (Insomnia), and followed by flipping my notebook to my ‘inspiration page’ and writing about the […]

  2. […] that be when she is all the way in England? Well, it seems that Jessica recorded herself reading Insomnia and then made a video to go with it! It is wonderful! We couldn’t really see the video at the […]

Leave a Reply to Stroll On « Rusty the Poet Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s