Fifteen minutes

Sat, 03/07/2015 - 00:58 -- Dmytro


I met myself

In the eyes of a woman 

Across the waiting room.

I wanted to tell her 

That we hurt alike - 

Ache gnawing, sucking, 

cutting into the spine, 

and suturing the gash,

tight, like a corset.

So that none of it shows, 

So no one sees it.


We’ve never met, 

but when she looked at me, 

she recognized me -

as taken off the same cross, 

and handed one to carry, 

and, chances are, 

we take the same meds

To get us through the day,

work emails and grocery store lines

without bleeding. 


It started when a chunk of my chest

went missing.

Ever tried walking around

with a hole, void gaping open?

Covered with clothes 

And my mild-mannered nature, 

but still. 

I tried stuffing it with all that fit, 

shoveling pleasures in there, 

self-help books and denial, 

but nothing stuck. 

Now, me - all cheekbones and nausea -

bracing myself, 

convincing myself, 

forcing myself 

to get through a shower 

and the next fifteen minutes,

The hole be damned.


They gave me a bunch of acronyms:


I took them, swallowed, and went home,

To come back the next week. 

Until then - I’m sitting,

With one sock on,

Working up the strength to 

Get around to the other one. 

Soon - shoes; breakfast, 

or whatever passes for it.

Soon - people

and using a sleeve to touch elevator buttons. 

So I sit some more.


This poem is about: 


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