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(Photo Credit: This poem was inspired by German painter Thorsten Dittrich‘s piece, Analysis, which part of his series: Indikation.  http://www.thorstendittrich.de)

 

 

Paralyzed inside

The staying

Relaying of doubt

Endless repeating of

Retreating of

My will

Once standing

Now squatting

Soon laying

But that I would

Straighten

Stand

Erect with prospects of

Chances for

Courage.

 

 

Hypnotized by

Echoes inside

Loud like a tuba

Booming against

Subway walls

At two o’clock in the morning

When lovers kiss

Goodbyes sour, linger

Into mourning

The lonely few

Number too small

To diffuse the

Notes

The rhythm

The song.

 

 

Mesmerized

I sit inside

Me

The me I know

Myself to be

And ponder

The me in the street

Treading feet on concrete

Smiling above

Labors of love

For those who pass

Or

A shield against

Further questioning

“Leave me be

and be the back that

I watch leave.”

 

 

Neutralized by comfort

Rejected

Encumbered by

The work of my mind

Smoke

Lifting up

Like steam rising

From a cup

Some evidence of

Heat

Quickly dissipating

Burnt up

Then out

Oxygen of doubt

Throws chains

Around and in and through

My almosts accrued.

 

 

Memorized

Prison of defeat

Broken latch

Deadbolt fallen

On the floor

Flopping around

Like a fish on the ground

Swelling

Heaving

Drying up

Melting down

To the sound of

Pacing

Frenetic racing

In a circle

Not even a spiral that

Denotes destination.

 

 

Compromised

Wandering inside

Here

Then wondering—

Consciousness there—

Where my eyes

Who are birds

Fly

Alight on a single point

Bright

Reflecting the sun

Inclined to run

Plunge into shade

Cool with decay

Arrayed in muted stain

But stay to

Examine this ray.

 

 

Energized

The edges of light

Like a spout

Pour memories out

Faces cascading

Words in shards relaying

Bloody stabs

Unanswered jabs

Impenetrable marble slabs

Erected high

At the entrance

Of my mind

Gleaming under

Beaming under

Illumination

Like light but

Also like . . .

 

 

Disguised

Pain

Old

Slathered in new stain

Dripping

Refrains

From then

Cutting the foundation

Of now

With shadows sharp

But also with

Opposite—

Bright—

Revealing

Not stealing but

Liberating through

Brilliance new.

 

 

Polarized

Between

What is

Possible

Out there and

The name of this absurdity

Gluing me to these walls

Inside

Subsiding

No

Dividing all of my

Determination

From

The fabrications of doubt

No

Fear

No

Terror

That my volition

Though beautiful

Is not enough

Out there . . .

 

 

Minimized

I find my active voice

Make a choice

To organize

Slay the giant

In my brain—

Smoking tobacco

Rolled in disdain

Of the day I mobilize,

Drunk on his power

Slurring his curses and

Stumbling over

The verses he

Whispered

Has whispered

Is whispering

Into the corners

Of this room—

This room

Erected in fear

And painted in doom

Crawling with roaches

Like a demon’s womb.

 

 

Sensitized

But not quite

Stabilized

(No need to wait

for the moment

of strength—

just go)

I stare once more

At the reflecting glow

Take my compass

In my hand

Start out

And below

The window

Of my inside

Tread first with caution

Second with grit

And finally with power

Toward the exit

And the freedom

And redemption

Like a contestant

Who jumps in the ring

Beats the shit

Out of the king

And wears the ring—

A victor

A hustler

An emerging prisoner

Who always was free.

 

copyright Jill Szoo Wilson

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