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Sniper by Paul E. Cooley

Depression is a sniper hiding in the forest of life.
Without warning, without provocation, it fires its steely bullet through your heart
rendering you mute, in pain, and wondering what happened
as your self-control, your grip on what’s real, falls to the ground
like so much slaughterhouse offal.

It takes everything to pick yourself up,
when you can feel the psychic blood draining from
what once held joy, faith, and hope.

Crawling for cover,
tears of empty rage sliding down torn and ragged cheeks,
each movement an obstacle in and of itself,
you finally hear the shot that felled you.
And even as you manage to find shelter,
you are felled once more.

There is no rescue party on its way.
No medic to stem and staunch the wound.
“Hope” does not make house calls for the dying.

Even after the sniper has left the trees,
its silver rounds of hurt deeply embedded in your flesh,
the fear of never finding the light again
can be worse than the fiery, breath crushing pain.

Friends drag your conscious gibbering body.
They apply the only aid they know how,
clean the wound,
cover the hole.
But only you can mend it,
scar over the damage,
and move on.

It is only the memory of hope,
happiness,
love,
that can make that happen.
Pills, words, hugs, music…
all are temporary solutions to
a chronic illness that is only
solved in the final cessation of life.

But I’m not ready yet.
The pain will pass.
The futility of life will once again
be lost to the wind like a grain of sand.
And the inner light will glow once more.

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2015 in Guest Poems

 

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87 Keith Dugger

Where does she go?
It’s not as though she left me holding a backpack chock full of a single change of clothing, a sundry kit to stay fresh, and a goodbye note from myself. To myself. It’s not as though I stood on those decaying train tracks that would lead me from my many yesterdays already spent and my predetermined and dwindling cache of remaining days left to invest wisely or waste wantonly. Yet it felt like she pushed me onto that platform all alone and walked away for what had to be more than a fair share of eternity.
She is my shadow.

Where does she go?
It’s not as though the goodbye note was written in a language that I’d come to understand with years of practice only to forget in a scant second left to dry up in a lazy sun. It’s not as though the backpack meant to prepare me for tomorrow was just a paper bag full of blank paper, wadded and crushed into fist-sized paper grenades surely meant to destroy the tomorrow I felt so guaranteed to enjoy. Yet there I was holding a paper bag full of promise, the empty papers screaming to be filled, begging to be anything but blank.
She is my shadow.

Where does she go?
It is as though she followed me quietly. She hid within my shadow whispering patiently for me to turn around and see the world abounding around me on a platform waiting on a train from yesterday to catch me up with a destination from tomorrow. Creativity is not a fickle thing; she is always there waiting. Watching. Whispering. Creativity is all around each of us and it’s up to us to use it or ignore it or wait until that perfect time to pounce. Don’t forget to pause and listen and make 2014 another great creative year.
She is my shadow and her name is creativity.

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2014 in Creativity Guest Posts

 

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