Worry’s hands closing tighter as I start losing breath.
I glance down and its fingers are a
snake happily coiled around my throat.
There’s a blackbird flying directly above.
Every step I take, he swoops down, closer to my head.
I’ve no other choice than to keep ducking.
Two plates in front of me. One spiced and warm,
the other smelling vaguely of poison.
There’s no way of knowing which was intended for me.
But it’s time to eat.
I wrote you a book, and when it was bound, all the pages were out of order--
spelling the same thing endlessly.
“They’re watching you.
Can’t you do any better?”
When I started to dance, I found my feet tied with ribbons,
I can’t stop moving.
The rope pulling me hasn’t frayed yet.
My spine is cracking and curving into a circle
and soon I’m a caterpillar on the floor, avoiding
It’s a dream underwater. I’m swimming
in a pond, surrounded by fish, and then
I open my eyes, and I’m actually
drowning and everyone is staring.
There’s a typewriter in my head that never stops clicking.
Page after page falls to the floor--
oh dear—who will ever clean up this mess?
I’ve found the itch on my back that I told you for years was there;
scratch it long enough and words tumble out
and fall into a stanza.
Maybe if I sit still long enough and tell myself
that I’m normal, my mind will stop
trying to eat itself alive.
Connect with me!
"My Anxiety in 10 Acts" is an original poem by Victoria Harris.
Writer, editor, and storyteller living in the Twin Cities.