I hide between layers of darkness and grime
The soot-black air rasping through my lungs
among the smoke and ash
There I find my home

If there were a breeze
to cleanse away the pollution in my mind
oh, what relief would be had
and perhaps I would be saved

I lay my rags upon the ground
and sink my face, guilt and shame
into the grit and dirt below me
as the wind howls over my bones

There is no saving or comfort
for the likes such as I
who perish in the storm whipping up
My shadow is all that remains of me.

27 thoughts on “Perish

  1. Beautiful. Your writing is amazing. Pleasant to read, deep and personal, strong and real. I like the pictures you pick for these types of blogs, I love having a visual I can connect with the writing. I really like the first line.I think it is because it brings you right to the center, the core of it all πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you so much, J. I value your opinion. I take a lot of time choosing the right image for my poetry or posts. It has to feel right to me – sometimes, it takes me almost as long to find a picture I’m happy with as it does to write the poem. Thanks again for your very kind words. Xx πŸ’ž

  2. Lovely and ominous at the same time Ellie; such a mix of emotions and sharp imagery. Goodness! But as organically human as we are… we cannot fully appreciate the joys and euphoria of life, without tasting the depths of pain and despair. We are much the wiser from both.

    Keep up the wonderful work, poetry, prose, and healing Madame. πŸ’“

    1. Thank you, Dwain. I totally agree with you. However, sometimes it feels like I have too much hurt, pain and despair and not enough joy and hope. Don’t get me wrong; I am quite happy a fair bit of the time. I’m just struggling with my feelings and memories lately, hence my poetry. I find writing incredibly cathartic, though, so although my poetry might sound very sombre and, perhaps, morbid, it is helping with the healing process. It’s not going to happen overnight, but hopefully, things will improve before too long. (My counsellor has just offered me another twelve sessions, taking me up till Christmas. I really appreciate that – I knew this counselling was time-limited, but there may be the possibility of continuing with someone else after that (once I climb to the top of the long waiting list, that is)). If I could afford to pay a lot more for counselling, I wouldn’t have such a long wait. Unfortunately, I don’t have the funds for this. πŸ’ŸπŸ’•πŸ’Ÿ

      1. But you are on the right path Ellie! As the popular adage/concept goes… β€˜β€―All things that are true of real value, the stuff of finer things, are worth the effort and sacrifice in the end.’ But such tangible rewards take time; often more than we might first think. πŸ™‚
        You WILL get there! Believe that! πŸ’“

    1. Thank you, Mick. Yes, I definitely find writing my poetry cathartic. As for being in a better place now, I’m not sure about that one yet. I’m working through some extremely difficult and traumatic stuff in counselling at the moment (as you probably know), and I think that sometimes it gets worse before it gets better. I’m not in a great place right now, but writing helps me process it; although I do worry whether my readers will get fed up with my outpourings of pain, but then, mostly, I am writing them for myself. That said, it makes a lot of difference when I get feedback and understanding from others. I am very grateful and appreciative of people’s kindness. Hope you are well, Mick. Take care X

      1. I agree, it does often get worse before it gets better, but, it should get better.

        And also yes, you’re writing mainly for yourself (as all writing is, or should be!) although the feedback certainly helps. I know that if I don’t get any feedback to something I just feel as though I’m yelling into a void.

        Hope it goes well. x

  3. Another raw, deep and profoundly insightful poem, Ellie. I see you visiting that dark space and examining all its creepy crevices and shadows. It’s part of the healing process, a very difficult part, and I want to acknowledge how much courage it takes to walk into those woods were you can’t breathe with your eyes open. Don’t linger too long, dearest. Keep moving through and soon you’ll be on the other side where maybe a beach lies with cool, fresh air you can breathe deeply into your lungs without fear. In the meantime, I’m watching you make the journey and I’m in awe at how you are able to write about it with such visceral intensity. Much love ❀️

    1. Thank you again for your kind and very understanding comments, Bridgette. You ‘see’ me so well. I am in a dark space right now, but I hope I can find a way out of it soon. I’m currently working through some horrific and traumatic things in counselling, as would have seen in my poetry. It has brought up a lot of pain and fear, but I know that speaking out will help me to heal and see my way out of this place. I love the analogy of being in the woods and then the comparison of being at the beach. I will keep a careful lookout for that beach. Thank you so much for all your care and encouragement, my friend. Sending my love to you, too Xx πŸ’–πŸ’•πŸ’–

  4. Your poems are so powerful! And the image fits perfectly. I think the worst thing about abuse is that it makes the victim feel as if there is no hope and no recovery. There is, but at times that is so very hard for them to believe. Physical damage heals so much more quickly than emotional damage, unfortunately.

    1. Thank you for your kind and understanding comment, Ann. I so appreciate your words. Although my counsellor and friends assure me that I will get through this, I’m finding it difficult to visualise at the moment. You are right; physical damage does ease with time. Emotional and mental pain from any abuse lasts a lot longer and is rarely forgotten about, if ever. I hope my pain will ease in time, but I think I still have a long way to go before I recover – or perhaps, you don’t recover, more like coming to terms with the abuse. I’m not sure yet. My counselling was due to finish next week. However, she said she doesn’t feel I’m ready to move on yet and has offered me some extra sessions to take me up to Christmas. What happens after that, I really don’t know. I have a lot of healing to do. Thanks again, Ann. Take care of yourself X

    1. Thank you, Jeff. I spend an awful lot of time searching Unsplash, Pexels and Pixabay for precisely the right image for my poems. Sometimes, it takes me almost as long to get that right as it does to write my poetry. I think there is so much to be told and felt by the correct picture. Thank you for noticing. P.S. I Hope your scan goes well tomorrow. Do let me/us know.

      1. I assume the unsplash artists are notified when their photo is used. I’m sort of surprised I’ve never received a message from one of them about a post. Have you ever heard from one?

      2. I think the artists are notified. I always credit the artist on any imaging platform (you’ll see their name under each photo I use). No one has ever contacted me to check up on this, though. I don’t think they get paid for their images, either. I used to use Google images, but it’s too complicated to determine which ones are licence free. With so many of them, I would click on them only to find a dirty big watermark stamped across the image I wanted to use. I rarely use Google for that purpose now. Stock has some fantastic photos, but unfortunately, they cost a fortune.

      3. I wish they’d contact us. I think it would be neat to have contact with artists from a different medium. I’ve reached out to a couple thanking them for creating the perfect picture to illustrate my post but I never heard back. That might say something about visual artists compared to writers.

  5. Ellie, my friend, when are you going to publish a book of poetry? I will be the first person to buy a copy with your autograph. Have a great day/night and remain safe. πŸ€—

    1. Aww – thank you, Tangie. As it happens, I’m just at the very beginning of finding out how to go about self-publishing a book via Amazon. Thank you so much for your encouragement and support to go ahead and do this. I may share more about this as I go along. I’m very moved by your comment and your thoughts. I hope your day/night is going well, too. Take care of yourself Xx πŸ€—πŸŒ·πŸ’›

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