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daytime sleeper / ruminations 2 / ruminations 4

Writing: Beth Davison

Illustration: Paola Valentina

CW: These poems contain discussion of mental illness and suicide.

(daytime sleeper)

Some nights I am driving a car,

Always from the passenger seat,

Always my mum’s car.

And I never reach


Or whoever

I am searching for.

Some nights I take the wrong exit,

Lose control, lights blurred, curbside compact.

Most nights I am a cyclist,

Faceless, always hurt.

I don’t mean to crash,

But in fighting my demons,

I kill myself twice.

On Tuesdays,

I anticipate elevator corpses

Coldly hung like fairground prizes.

I’ve never seen a real dead body before,

I wonder how it would feel

To see a sultry, soulless being,

Hollow. An outward introspection

Of the depressed mind;

Solitary solidarity,

Animation illustrated.

I want to leave this car behind.

Jump out, bold, onto the runway,

To no longer be the passenger,

But the one I love, the kisses I breath,

The blood that will always bleed.

(ruminations 2)

Sometimes I forget how to walk

My legs, disjointed,

weightlessly weighing me down.

With you I am breathless,

safely scared, minutes from leaving.

In my sleep I run to you,

insufferable marathons

along cliffs of despair.

Hope, memory, longing,

I no longer dream.

(ruminations 4)

Sometimes I ask myself

If you are a weed,

Accidental beauty,

Superseding overgrowth;

Nature’s unwanted messenger,

Twisting yourself into my garden

Of mortar and thorns.

I feel the warmth of your breath

Though I can’t see you.

I am alone in the clouds,

Distant, content.

I wish the sky was clear,

Wish to find myself lost

In the luminary darkness.

I am plummeting.

How can I float so high

But fall so hard?

Am I not me?

The present seems

A distant memory.

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