The silence of fear

I forget what my voice sounds like
As I scream in the night
A distant echo in the darkness
It fades with the light

I hold my head quiet
With the slow dawn of day
I remember a time
When I had something to say

There is silence that holds peace
Gives you succour and light
And silence that holds thought
Of thinking, ideas about right

But here in the sunlight
Of mid afternoon
It’s the silence of fear
That fills every room

It moves among us
We don’t understand why
It takes a voice from a loved one
Without a goodbye

Hold me close, hold me dear
They aren’t rules anymore
The kindest to do
Is to stop at my door

I miss the light
Of real human touch
Of voices played loudly
Of the holding of much

But the world is held still
A moment in time
A cacophony around me
Played out in a mime

A thread  holds us together
A quiet held true
It binds us in space
A me and a you

Without any noise
We wait here in dread
It follows us home
In word never said

The world has made over
In one singe day
Its changed all around us
In ways we can’t say

There’s a new kind of noiseless
A new kind of here
Now the quiet that dwells
Is the silence of fear

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Every word I’ve ever known

I have cut my nails
I have pulled out all my hair
Slashed the bottoms of my feet
And let them bleed on the stair

You have to look it in the eye
You cannot back away
You have to look straight at it
Say what you have to say

I pricked the end of every finger
And every single toe
I climbed into the bath
I am letting it all go

There’s no other way to get it
You can’t let yourself obscure
You’ve got to know you’ve got this
Rather than half sure

I looked at bloodied water
And out loud, I said my name
And then I simply began
Because I will never be the same

You cannot hold back
Give it half of what you’ve got
You’ve got to give it everything
If you want the lot

I just said them all
Every word I’ve ever known
And when I was finally finished
I was finally alone

I rounded them, caressed them
I let those words go free
Sent them out into the world
No longer part of me

Then I closed my lips quite tightly
I let my tongue finally rest
I am wholly ready now
I am at my best

I go back out into the world
Scarred yet fully formed
And I live my life

In silence.

In total silence.

And in my silence,

I will deafen you.

A poet in the mirror

Today I met a poet
I don’t know her name
I saw her image in the mirror
I am not quite the same

When I read her words
They tore me apart
Thundered down the hallway
Stabbed me through the heart

Do you think its possible
That I might not be here
I dissolve into the wall
I might never reappear

I want to make as if
You can never truly see me
To go into the silence
And not exist completely

Because I have read her words
They echo in my head
I don’t know why she wrote them
They were not words I have said

And yet they came from somewhere
A place that I have been
I deny understanding
They are not words that I mean

Yet still she keeps on reading
At the top of her voice
Shouting ever louder
And I don’t have a choice

Today I met a poet
And I cannot pretend
The words that she shouted
They were mine in the end

Those are not my words

Carefully drafted
Beautifully crafted

Those are not my words

Your ears ringing
Your heart singing

Those are not my words

Lifted up, soaring high
Big emotions in the sky

Those are not my words

My words are tiny, small
They take up no space at all

They’re not heartfelt prose

More a little voice in the dark
Hiding behind a bush in the park

When they see someone they know

A tiny little, a very small sound
Held close tight, to the ground

When I walked past you the other day

A murmur, a ripple, a hum
A fading heartbeat, not a drum

You didn’t notice me.

Or my words.

And her-

And her-

She is a child of the gaps.
Of the spaces between the things we say.

Her noise is voiceless.
Because its only purpose is to shield us

From the realisation, that we are a shell.

Of what we used to be,
Of what we wanted to be.

The inside is hollowed out.
Trauma, life has eaten us up.

We have no words to say to each other.
We savage our partnership with silence,

And salve it with cool contempt.
All so we can survive it.

And her-

She is a child of the gaps
Filling our void with her noise.

Noise, any noise, just noise.
Because the noise binds us together

Fills the holes where the world leaks through.

And the silences tear us apart,
Rends us in two.

She is the life raft of words.
Dragging us from the isles of despair.

And we cling to it, to her,
As if those words belong to us,

As if her birth somehow gave us the right.
One day her voice will be her own.

And we-

We will face the gaps alone.

There was nobody here

Don’t cry in silence, I thought I’d try poetry again, not sure if the rhythm is quite right.

I learned to cry silently,

To never let it show.

To lie right down beside him,

And never let him know.

He shattered into fragments,

I told myself it was fine.

I picked up the pieces,

 for a life that was not mine.

I stood beside his grave,

I did not know what to say.

I put my emotions in my pocket,

For another rainy day.

And then came the reckoning,

Along with the fear.

I screamed, I cried, I shouted.

There was nobody here.