The Public Garrotting of Dreams

Pain has so many faces that it is a hard task

To point in the right direction.

Pain contradicts my happiness whenever it can.

Finding an enemy in a friend, a friend in an enemy.

Forcing me into isolation when all I need is company.

Telling me that I am everything that I’m truly not.

And behind all the smoke, what is my pain trying to tell me?


Should I be more detached from myself?

More in tune with my surroundings?

The cacophony of victimhood, voice over voice,

Carelessness, violence after violence, money over living bodies.

When I walk out of my front door I cannot see my values

Reflected. I can’t spot anyone who lives up to their purpose,

Who knows of their meaning in the grand scheme of things.


I come home an empty vessel,

To pick myself back up, to fill myself back up.

It’s hard to smile, it’s hard to breathe.

It’s too loud. I project my pain onto the wall.

Trying to look at myself in ecstasy and comprehend

Why I feel so powerless, why every little human disaster affects me.

Why I feel like I’m slipping away from myself and the big picture.


I imagine the world differently in literature.

Death doesn’t feel like death.

I find comfort in every word, from the page into my brain.

Language resonates within me and I never get tired of its sounds.

Language enriches me. I’m at home in the universe that stimulates

My mind and makes me think, empathise and better myself.

From the inside of a book to the images in my body onto the streets.


“Mariana” by Valentine Cameron Prinsep (1838-1904)

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