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It never looks the same
yet it remains the same
at the same time.
At times it starts slowly
the way fog preys upon the night
creeps over the deepness,
undetected,
until by daylight
it’s collected
everything into its damp, dark clasp,
grasping greedily for more.

Sometimes it sneaks up on me
the way a chill rises up the spine
one vertebrae at a time.
It arrives without warning or a heads up
and before I know it I’m down
and out, unsure of how I got here
or there or how I even got out of bed.
Instead my head is inundated,
saturated with the ever hated
echoes of worry, doubt, fear,
tears threatening to resume
the familiar trails and mazes
they’ve blazed down my face.

Sometimes it takes the form of a gentle whisper
stirring beneath the surface
of my conscious mind
finding its strength and power
with each hour that it feeds upon my own.
“You could end it all now,” it sings,
brings a calming peace with each
breath, it etches, sketches
“suicide, suicide, suicide”
into my very bones,
coincides with my own
desires to take that blade
and score my flesh, pores,
the voice implores me to consider it
like I’ve considered it so many times before.

It shows up as the distinct memory
of that time someone called me
those God-awful things
the wound still stings, aching,
the pain keeps pulsating
I feel like a small child
swirling slowly on the swings
wishing for wings
anything to take me away
to keep reality at bay.
Dazed and confused
intent on making dusty circles
with my shoes in the dirt,
the hurt rising in my throat
like a boat on the ocean
the emotions hard to control.
And the familiar refrain
replays in my brain:
“You are nothing,
you are nothing,
you are nothing.”

It comes and goes in spells,
inexplicable wells
of sorrow and grief
no remedy or relief
can begin to assuage.
Instead it pervades every inch of my being
seeing any opportunity to pounce
any ounce or thread of hope pulled
until it completely unravels.
It travels the routes of my veins
making a dark map of the pain
as it moves inward and outward,
words cannot begin to pinpoint
where it began
and when it will end.

And then just as quickly as it comes
it goes, departing like the ghost
that it was.
It’s finished its haunting,
its taunting for now.
The fog begins to lift,
drifting once again into the abyss,
making space for the light to resume its place,
dry the tears on my face,
replace the aches and groans in my bones.
I reach down into the dirt
to retrieve my weary wounded soul
hold it softly between cupped hands
that land at my heart’s center.
All the while whispering,
“You’re safe now,
you’re safe now,
you’re safe now.
Come home.”

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