Reasons to go on: Poems, part 4

Reason to go on: Bloody-mindedness

In sickness
A pail of depression;
A fist of anger;
A sweated brow of anxiety;
A deep well of despair;
A flight of fear;
Simmer together for 50 years.
Drink the evil broth.

The show must go on
Just one cut, then another,
slice through skin
smooth and thin;
blade drawing criss-cross, firm and slow
bubbling rubies surface and flow;
the deed is done
your demon’s won;
the day is lost –
at such a cost –
there’ll be another, weep through pain
another day with little gain
lose the fight
cut and scar,
cut out the pain, too deep to smother.

The rockface of my mind
does not seem kind
Cannot be scaled
Nor seen to fail
Will never wear
nor sag nor tear
I must be strong
and beat the throng
I’ll write and draw
expose my core
explain my mind
through word and line
with no more speech
to you I’ll reach.

No Tears
I thrust my hand into the fire of life.
Flesh and blood fused into one
loveless lump.
Shed no tears.

Mutilated by tongues of flame, blood red,
licking out of lying mouths,
None see the slow death.

Hollow thought of hollow mind
grasping at substance which has no form
Invisible body of invisible soul
grasping at substance which has no form
grasp no more
there is nothing there.

no voice
there is no voice
within me with
out me
how can you know my secrets
even I
cannot put voice to?
written in Hospital in the late 1990s and exploring my feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness