Hemingway has his classic moment in "The Sun Also Rises" when someone asks Mike Campbell how he went bankrupt.
All he can say is, "Gradually, then suddenly."
That's how depression hits. You wake up one morning, afraid that you're gonna live.
- prozac nation

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Alone, condolences are quite harmless

Sometimes it just takes over.
I would say it comes from nowhere,
but at the same time I’m almost convinced it comes from somewhere.
Mostly I’m completely unaware of its presence,
but other times I can feel it seated back there.
Sometimes this sadness grows and twines to fill and capture my girl-body,
to gnaw at my reasoning like an in-grown toenail.

I push my in-grown toenail into the bedpost until I’m aware and it (the pain) devours me.
I’ve crossed the border and no amount of grasping or gasping can turn me back.
(The doctor will tell you to count backward to calm your fighting.
The last thing you will see is his hazy face laughing at your heavy, helpless horror).

My duvet cover has slipped off (but only half way),
somehow catching itself on my clammy pork-sausage feet.
It’s hot. (Consuming, window-closed hot).
My feet begin to get flustered in their straightjacket sheets and, as they’re battling,
their panic passes its message slowly along my body until I’m half awake and stricken.
The mind has no time to reason with itself,
much less to sympathise with the terror of toes.
But I still thrash, as if for survival.

(Alone, condolences are quite harmless, like ants,
but when they’re streamed into your head in the middle if the night they can haunt you,
like a crawling crocheted glove).