My insanity is not nearly as profitable
As being eccentric. It’s more the kind of crazy
That gives people pause,
Have them back away, slowly,
As if confronted by a growling tiger.
My insanity is like railroad spikes
Hammered through all five stages
Of my consciousness, attaching
Me to bed. If the amount of effort
It takes for me to rise and shower,
Or even eat, was known,
I’d be given a medal every time
I groomed myself and went to work.
There’s a paralyzing paranoia
That surges through me;
Making my limbs numb and frying
My mind into mush.
The kicker is this: the fear
Is unspecific; I’m generally afraid
Of anything outside my body.
Once, after nearly a week of being confined
In bed, a relative told me my problem
Was that the devil was trying to hold me down.
I was religious then, so this made sense.
But now I believe in neither gods nor devils,
Including the ones waging war inside my head.
A. J. Hayes
Give a poet a pen