1142p 11th december 2021

this late at night
at this time of year
there are some very dark stretches of route nine heading north to home
so dark that i could turn off my headlights

and disappear

there are very few other cars
no lights
i could drift into nothingness
brightness

then black.
Nothing.

the road ahead opens its maw
promising to swallow me whole.
it could be done.
Over.

this void within my chest swells
my brain reels

this is a thing I know, now, filed away.

I see you, out in the world

I see you, out in the world
flickers of you, flashes of you.
I see your hands on other people’s bodies
I see your shape, under the wrong face
hints of your smile, your wink, your dimples
oh, those dimples.
I see these different parts of you,
I see

you/not you
I wonder what you would be doing if it was me who died
If it was you who was left behind to cope.
Where would you be, in all of this mess?
How would you be?

Who, even.

I saw a man in a red pickup truck behind me last night, driving home.
A man who had a long, scraggly grey beard underneath your mouth.
your hands on his steering wheel
(your truck was blue; I never saw you in it)

the other day I looked up from my desk and saw the body I used to hug
it took every ounce of willpower to not stand up and walk over to not you.

(re)possessed

I am sitting on the damp chair (everything is damp)
It is 3:41 in the morning and in the space where my car usually lives there is nothing but a half a piece of paper towel
I am smoking and I am smoking and I am smoking and nothing is going to soothe this I fear
The woman who comes to repossess my car at 3:24 in the morning says, “I don’t want to embarrass you”
I am not embarrassed
I am defeated, again.

She says, “you have your health” I snicker
Do I? Do I.
“You have a roof over your head”
yeah and a house in foreclosure.
“Just call Nissan in the morning” she says, airily.
Just call.
She says this as if it were actually that easy.
Just call Nissan.
I try to explain that it isn’t that easy.
That I have widow brain and I am bipolar.
At the word bipolar she perks up.
“Do you need to call someone? Are you going to be okay.” wanting to absolve herself of further responsibility
The answer to that is obviously no and no. No I am not going to be okay.
No I am not okay.
No I am not okay no I am not embarrassed but I am desperate.
How am I going to get back to sleep.

It is 3:55 in the morning and everything is damp.

1130a 31st february 2021. the impossible day.

i have seen the edge.
walked right up to it, lookedover.
i have looked into the abyss and it welcomed me.
its maw is deep and wide
and it welcomed me.
come, it said.
step over the edge.
or don’t
but i am here for you when no one else is. i will wait for you.
I know you will be back.

teeth bright and sharp
white and cold.
keep hold of what’s good.
that’s all there is to save me
that’s all there is
flashes of all the good things

grasping at anything to pull me back from this edge.
grasping at them
smashing them into my brain
shoving out this other
look away. look away.

518p 2d march, 2021. On defeating suicide.

That’s what it is, that’s what suicide is
It is literally the only and one solution to
“I don’t want to feel like this anymore and I know that I will
I don’t want to feel like this anymore and the only surefire way to not ever feel like this anymore is to kill myself.”
That is the only surefire way.I don’t want to feel like this anymore I hate feeling like this I don’t want to feel like this anymore

my voice grows shrill inside my head and out and it amplifies as my heart rate amplifies and screams

I don’t want to feel like this anymore.
There isn’t any other solution to not feeling like this anymore to *not ever* feeling like this anymore.

nothing is helping nothing is helping nothing is helping

it is going to keep being bad, isn’t it
it is going to keep hurting
yes.
yes it is.
people are going to keep being stupid
you are going to want to scream and hit and rage and you cannot
it is going to keep driving driving you down lower and lower and lower until you cannot breathe.

you might not want to feel like this anymore but Mojo.
Mojo and cookies.
Weed.
The full fucking moon and a sky full of stars.
Kissing.
Art.
Music.
Kissing.

There will be kissing Saturday.

so if I’m getting this right the idea is not to wish for it to stop feeling this way because it will always keep feeling this way
I mean it’ll stop for a while but then it goes right back it always has and it always will
it always always will.

no the idea is to not think about how terrible it is feeling and to only think about ending that but to think about all of the things you don’t want to end
Mojo.
Mojo and cookies.
Weed.
Those are all things I can do by myself
Those are all things I don’t have to depend on anyone else.
but kissing.
You can’t do that alone.
You need at least one other person for that.

You can’t go just yet.
You’re not done yet.
There are still so many good things.

614p, 26th february, 2021. hope.

a photo of me with my unwashed, tearstained face, in front of a wall with a laser-cut rising sun sculpture, a photo of me as “Rosie (the Riveter) Revisited” by my husband in 2002, and an exhortation to “cheer up honey pie” .
there is no filter on this photo.

I am driving and I am listening to the President and I am crying
I am crying and I am crying and I am crying and they are huge ugly tears
“A dose of hope”, he says and the tears flood down my face “a dose of hope” he says

Hope is something that I never ever had.
It was never even on the list of things to look for.
Hope was for the foolish and the losers and the suckers.
the idea of hope was as painful as the reality of unrequited love, a crush that goes nowhere, being ghosted by someone you really, really thought you liked.
Hope was not for me, not ever.

but maybe,
maybe now it is.
maybe I can have some for myself, just a little.
I’m not asking for much.
Just a little.

Hope.
The taste of it, the texture.
rolls around in my mouth, between my fingers.
hope.

I draw my hand back, my heart back sharply from the edge of this hope
too sharp, this edge, too unknown.

My chest tightens, my jaws clench, my fingernails dig into my palms.
breath shallows, and hitches as my eyes darken, kohl smudging my cheeks.

“Guess what!” the President says, excitement clear and bright through the speakers
“We landed a rover on Mars!”

hope.

1116a 27th january 2021

it is elevensixteen now but at 1111
(waiting for the strike?)
so much flash of anxiety flash of panic
i learn have learned to keep track to
watch
to pay attention to monitor
to see what
i mean it is always as it is happening
it is always in the middle
although
increasingly it is on the way up
in
out.
it is no longer as the smoke is clearing
it is no longer when there are horrified faces

there is actually (sometimes)
(sometimes)
time to stop it before i
before without i cannot without
without
without distressing to the point
of disintegration

so it is an hour later and it would seem
that I was unable to stave off this
this disintegration
this dysphorically manic tumult

yet another hour later
i know it is having an effect,
taking the sweet
but i really just don’t want to be right now.
not at all.

146p

there shouldn’t be this much rage
there shouldn’t be this much pain
it should have eased by now i am trying
i am trying everything to be eased.

another hour later
chest tight
shoulders tight
jaws tight
there are two and a half hours to go
before I can go
core tight
i feel frozen, stiff
as if the only parts of my body i can move
my left hand to write, move across the
page, turned forty five degrees to
not ink up my hand

another hour gone
anger, still
no patience, rattled
i need sublimation
i need to be underneath and out
i need to be out and gone
one hour eleven minutes to go.

twenty minutes left.
almost there.
almost there.