the hysteric

Writing by Hannah Dove. Illustration by Claire Shankie.

here it is.

it is festering and ugly and nobody wants to touch it.


here, come close: it is part of you too:

it is swaddled and sticky,

it is going to bed with us tonight.


i’m sure of it.

it is a feeling in my arms,

it is that pinching behind my left eye,

it is your new weed habit, smoke like a weighted blanket,

it is breakfast gone cold.


embrace your lifelong friend, how it clings to you

it is perhaps holding onto me too tight.


it is waking me at 4am

it is my mind dying soundlessly

it is you not being around so much anymore

it is longing for love

it is; not i am


can you see it all now?

will you hold me?

will you hold me (if only so i can hold you too)?

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