December 10, 2010

Shattered (BTP prompt)

I really didn't follow prompt this week, but instead took some snippets from a few unfinished pieces on the same topic and wove them together into one.
Knowing someone with mental/emotional illness is a difficult thing to watch and attempt to deal with. I know someone with these issues; this poem attempts in it’s feeble way to describe her pain.

She holds herself through too long days
enforcing stillness with granite jaws,
Her nails tattooing crescent moons
While gripping demons
with sweat slicked palms.

Afraid of breathing much too deep,
best to keep each intake shallow,
or she might loosen up a scream,
expelling monsters
she cannot tame.

To see her face, at first you’d think
her mind was just preoccupied.
But then look deeper at her trance,
bright eyes unfocused,
blind to light.

Then some slight switch is somehow flipped
and nerves, emotions come unwound,
like prickly knotted sisal rope
of tangled threads
that won’t be bound.

With thoughts careening wildly
through eternities of mindless pain,
no one can ever talk her down
And backwards to
a life of sanity.


  1. Cynthia, I am awestruck by the sensitivity of your poem to all the nuances of the theme. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. Cynthia,
    I love this poem. These few lines say so much.
    "like prickly knotted sisal rope
    of tangled threads
    that won’t be bound."

  3. Yes, Cynthia, you have handled this with great sensitivity. Beautifully written.

  4. Cynthia, oh so painful. The sense of being trapped inside oneself comes across uncomfortably well. Thank you for writing this.

  5. An excellent piece, Cynthia.
    You capture a corner of the pain beautifully.

  6. A wonderful capture of this less than happy situation. Vivid portrayal, indeed.

  7. wow..lots going on here with many great lines.....thanks for sharing Cynthia

  8. I love this one! Great writing and vivid details. Thanks for sharing!!

  9. Wow - excellent work. I especially like the tension you created in the second stanza.

  10. I like the "no one can ever talk her down" ... strong work, Cyndie.

  11. As Derrick is leaving the blogosphere, you might like to leave a message on the post
    "Farewell Derrick " at my blog