Fetched my cleverly thought out and over analyzed diagnosis, I had received last year

To make sure that I still understand who I am and of the formalities, I must adhere

I am not quite feeling like myself today, if I can even say that with a straight face

Once again practicing all of my lines and gestures if I’m ever asked to showcase

This time, like many others before, I am having difficulty addressing the door

Called out of work “sick” again, this has been more times than I can account for

Tones of ill-fated conversing and interacting make my lips and fingers grow numb

Anxiety and I scrutinize each situation finding that I’m just playing a game of zero-sum

I have no jurisdiction over what happens outside, so this realization has governed me

Leaving me with no other options besides the obvious fight, or to cowardly flee

So stale is the shaking from needing a lie or response for what is going on in my head

You’ve indicated your phobias too, why not respect mine as I decay, lying in my bed?


  1. You are not decaying. You are creating. Never doubt that!
    “Once again practicing all of my lines and gestures if I’m ever asked to showcase.”
    That’s the spirit. And even if you can’t get out the door you can video yourself on your phone.
    Just so you know. I have a very dear friend who I have to face time with because she rarely leaves her house. She is a respected author on the NYTimes best seller list. Once a year she goes to the Miami Book Fair. (She doesn’t drive there.) People usually come to her.
    Her books are all published and best sellers but I will keep her name anonymous since she is a well known author. I met her in college and we acted together in several plays and have been friends since 1970. She is still beautiful and vibrant and able to command a room with her speaking voice. That doesn’t make it any easier that her talent is vast since her courage is not as large.
    Yet her contracts require her to show up now and then for book signings and she does when she must.
    So, You are not alone with this problem.
    I often wonder if genius comes with other tortures that imaginative, sensitive souls must endure in order to create their art.
    This of Van Gogh. He saw the molecular motion with the naked eye and painted it in Starry Night. Yet, his peers, instead of praising his genius, locked him in an insane asylum. How unfair it is to judge those who perceive the world differently.
    Keep writing. Maybe one day the door will open wide.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re awesome. Thank you so much. I know some of the greats in art were shut-ins. Yet I feel so much pressure to make it seem like I’m one of the crowd. I have always struggled with that since starting elementary school. It physically hurts sometimes. Don’t get me wrong I do have a good time with close friends and family but I still analyze ever moment while I’m in it and home in the dark. A cabin in the woods…. Other than the killings Kaczynski had the right idea.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, it is hard not to put pressure on ourselves. We are our own worst critics. I think I felt like you did growing up which is why I became a beatnik/hippie and played in a rock band. Other girls weren’t doing that! It took the pressure off being one of the gang. I never had a gang, just a few friends who I am still close with today. Only now we live cities apart. But visit yearly.
    The one thing I have noticed about poets, is that they band together and give one another strength and courage. I watch the young people doing spoken word today and they embrace each other and truly give positive vibes to help with the insecurities they all struggle with. And the snaps they receive is worth a thousand hugs.
    I wish you could find a local group of poets and share your work. You are so talented! Perhaps they could help you through the door if only to reach them on the other side.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I am super fascinated by the beatnik beat movement. What I would give to gather up what I know now and hop in a time machine. I’d be chillin in the basement bunker with Ginsberg, and Burroughs. We have a cat named Jackie and I called him Jack Kerouac lol. Such passion and love and hate all at once. Like a validated acid trip. Ugh I could go on in my dream world for years. Haha.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your dream world sounds a lot like my dream world. As a little girl I threw away princess dresses and switched right to dressing up like a beatnik from elementary school all the way until high school. Black turtlenecks and tights, a beret and sunglasses. “Cool man cool”. From there I went right into turning my poems into folk songs. I was too young to have really been apart of the beat movement but I slid in going to college in the late 60’s. They’d have coffee houses all around campus where you could play music or read poetry. It was a pretty amazing time to grow up. Coconut Grove was down the street so incredible performers were always around, Jerry Jeff Walker, George Carlin, Peter, Paul and Mary Bob Zimmerman (Dylan)etc. they’d go to The Flick which was across the street from my dorm. At u of Miami I saw Janice Joplin and Hendrix wS at the Miami Pop Festival. You can’t even imagine the talent. Each one brilliant and raw because it was before they were famous or early in their career. The intimacy of a small coffee house made it special. You would have loved it. You write like you’re from that era. Perhaps that’s why I enjoy your pieces so much.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s my getaway. It’s where everything is okay for me. In my mind I go back in time and it’s so vivid and real. Peter, Paul, and Mary… We just had to put our cat Puff down and hense the kittens name Jackie paper whom I call Jack Kerouac haha. Our lives have intertwined on another parallel tied together by a wormhole. Life is so strange sometimes.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Well, I believe in time travel Joseph. (I always felt like I was born in another time.) You know the aborigines believe in something called “dream time”. And that when we dream we travel and time moved. It’s actually happening in the dream. Time changes. My dreams have always connected me to people in the past. So who knows… perhaps in “dream time” we listened to Peter Paul and Mary together when they were young and singing in small coffee houses around the country. BTW Mary was so heartfelt and earnest when she sang in person. She could bring me to tears. And I was so close to her that I could literally feel her passion to change things for the better. Years later when I saw them again in a large venue the three of them were wonderful, but it wasn’t the same vibe as the three of them young and fresh, a few feet from my table. That was quite something. And Jerry Jeff Walker (He wrote Mr. Bo Jangles) was literally a foot from me as he sang that song in the confines of that tiny place. Somehow, as I watched each of these people I just knew they would send a wave of change throughout the nation. Yes perhaps a wormhole. I had long dark hair in those days. And you probably sat right next to me drinking your coffee entranced by the message in the music.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Absolutely. I think we had a great time lol. I have to tell my girlfriend about your Peter Paul and Mary stories if that’s ok. She has stories of watching it on tv with her dad. She had Puff before we met. So Jack-eats-Paper (another name I call that lil terror) is our new venture. No need for children for us, too much to carry around when we time travel. My family grew up’ish and followed the Grateful Dead so that era of music has always consumed my life, from Dan Hicks, David Grisman, Merl Saunders, Neil Young, and John Fogerty to name a few of the albums playing non stop.. all day.. all night. My uncle was a taper and wrote a book about following the dead. Not the best intellectually written piece of work (not to be a nasty critic) but I have heard from those that were around then that it was quite entertaining for a quick read.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Of course share away with your girlfriend. And Yes, as Peter Paul and Mary became well known they were on TV a lot.
        My cousin was a Dead Head and followed them everywhere. I enjoyed their music but never traveled around the country from concert to concert like he did. He probably read your uncle’s book. That era of music was pretty special.
        And yes cats travel easily in dreams. Kids not so much… they suck you back to reality. Lol
        My current cat, Mr. Darcy, is a rescue a year old. I think after two husbands this cat just might be my true soulmate. He’s purr-fect. 😻

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, my dear Joseph. You are certainly not rotting away in some bed. You have a gift. Use it until it’s spent, then use it again!! I know you have it in you to win this battle. I’m on the sidelines, cheering for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t know if I have mentioned anywhere. I have an autoimmune illness that has harmed my health and appearance greatly. It’s been four years and 20+doctors (stopped counting after 20) and there is no diagnosis let alone cure. First fighting to stay alive then Fighting for normalcy is frustrating but you cant let it consume you.

    My whole world toppled I had to see my closest suffer and die. but this time pushed me to work harder. Fight harder. Everytime something bad happens I tell myself ‘ok so little more effort’ but I know I will be out of all this shit one day. That keeps me going.

    Make your pain your strength. It’s hard but it’s possible.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry to hear that. I hope you do find some reprieve. I have an autoimmune issue but it’s my skin on hands and feet and I couldn’t walk until they figured out what was going on. So I can slightly imagine what you’re going through but would never now the extremeness of your situation. I appreciate the encouragement and the push to just keep on keepin’ on. Thank you so much for reading and stopping by. Be well. 🎩


      1. I have a mass between my eye and brain as its part of a gland it cant be removed like a tumor and it’s hard to even ge to it. So the whole treatment is trial and error. Steroids immune suppressants radiotherapy and now surgeries..dont know when it’s going to end if its ever going to end at all.
        So with situations like these you have to push yourself as things wont just happen for you. You have to keep working on options maybe it’s your chance to focus on something else. Thats how I see it. My focus actually shift to my skills when I couldnt focus on career. You are a very talented writer. Everything will fall into place on it’s right time.
        My pleasure. You too.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I will absolutely keep you in my thoughts. You have definitely contributed to my perspective on things today. Thank you so much for that and for the conversation today. I love learning more about the people behind the typewriters. Thank you for sharing. Hopefully talk to you soon. 🎩

        Liked by 1 person

  5. i love your poetry deeply. i feel that you express so well what it is like living with a mental disorder in a world with little understanding of the subject, and i always relate to your pieces, as i know what it’s like to “scrutinize every situation.” thank you for this xx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I can relate to every word you so beautifully write. I am sorry that I can relate because it is a pain I know that I wish no one else knew. I understand how much it stinks (to say it kindly) that we have to make up a lie when we are not mentally well. I pray one day that could end, but for now we have to do what we do. You and everyone needs mental health days to get better and remain well. Take care of yourself and keep writing. Your writing will help you as well as MANY others.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I have no doubt that you have a lot more of everything in that mind and soul of yours. You are so talented I think you should compile your best poetry and make a book. I would definitely buy your book or books for sure. I hope you will feel better soon. Be well my friend.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Sounds great. Please let us know so we can buy your book and then after you become a famous author I can say I remember him when… and he was my blogging friend… I am looking forward to that… when the time is right.

        Liked by 1 person

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