Darkness is a place
Why am I calling darkness a place? It is because you don't have to stay there. You can come back from it. It doesn't always seem like that and paths can be hidden or difficult to reach. However, one day a path may take you back to a lighter place.
I thought I'd make this a different section. Those who are not interested in sad poetry don't have to come here. Some people totally love sad things and dark places. I will reveal that this is not me. So I'm not likely to visit this space much. But you are very welcome to hang out here.
I don’t just feel scared, petrified, terrified.
I feel in despair.
I hate that feeling in my stomach.
I really hate it.
It feels physically unpleasant.
I don’t just feel rubbish, the lowest of the low, unworthy.
I feel I’m a complete failure.
I hate feeling like this.
It feels like the end of the world.
I’m not just incapable of changing this.
Instead it might get worse.
I might lie on my bed quivering.
Eyes wide open, staring at the ceiling.
Wondering if it will ever pass.
I am counting the days.
How long have I felt like this?
Has it been every day?
There was a day without it, this is my little hope.
I am clutching at straws.
After a few weeks I get a lot worse.
I have this feeling in my stomach
all the time.
It doesn’t go away.
It’s the feeling you have before going down a rollercoaster.
It’s the feeling you have when you’re terrified.
It’s not just a feeling.
It’s a pain.
A pain of fear.
I squirm with pain.
When I have the feeling a little less I go outside.
I try to be like others.
I look at others and I envy them.
They feel normal.
I want to feel normal! My envy of other people is an abyss.
I search for a cause.
I have searched for a cause from the beginning.
When my worries and my anxieties didn’t match anymore.
When I felt fear without reason.
I searched and I found the thyroid.
Butterfly shaped little organ
sitting in my throat.
Pouring out hormones
sometimes too much
sometimes too little.
Why try to ruin my life, little thyroid?
Why not leave this girl alone?
It’s difficult to be angry at an organ.
But I am so frustrated.
Why cause me so much pain, little organ?
My work suffers.
My relationships suffer.
I cancel tours and concerts.
I only live with fear now.
I stop performing altogether.
Years later someone asks,
are you playing again?
The fear settled in my stomach
ready to attack.
Sometimes I get anxieties
but I don’t know
is this normal?
Is it connected to real worry?
Or is the thyroid starting up again?
My life has changed.
My little organ has changed my life.
It controls me,
it punches me in the stomach,
and I have to live with this.
But bit by bit,
little by little,
over days and weeks and years
I am still getting better.
I will live with the hope
that my anxieties
I would wave them goodbye
with no tear in my eye.
© Vroni Holzmann
* Note by the editor on 6/1/2021: I wrote this in response to a twitter post by the Thyroid Trust looking for poetry or art connected to the thyroid.
I am not good
at the goodbye.
I am not suited
to lose a moment
or a person
and be okay with it.
Maybe I am better
at the badbye.
That’s where you throw
and say the things
Say ‘I don’t want
you to go
Where will you go?
So no goodbye.
as I gracefully
take my hat
to say a crybye
I cannot help
As you are wonderful
and I may never
see you again.
You know I’m waving
and shedding a tear
as I write.
Sadbye to you.
I shall have my memory.
© Vroni Holzmann
Symptoms of Grief
My father passed away.
I was told there are five phases of grief.
Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance.
But those few terms will never describe the complicated sorrow.
There’s a subtleness in feelings.
So these will have been my feelings between
the last breath and the new life without.
Will I never see him again?
Will this happen to me, too?
You would have gone anyway.
It was better this way.
Feeling like a small child.
Going a little crazy.
Reckoning. You just wait and see.
Envy of other people.
The deepest sadness.
Questioning relative youth.
Being fucked around with.
Not understanding others.
Guessing what I think I will feel and getting it wrong.
Talking to oneself.
Wrong last moments.
I wasn’t ready.
You weren’t ready.
Where are you?
Arguing with fate.
It’s better you have gone.
Wanting to see you one more time.
Anger at messages from friends.
Extremely thin skin.
Feeling it’s solved.
Feeling it shouldn’t have happened.
Feeling bad about feeling good.
Having respectless thoughts.
Feeling distracted from the grief.
Feeling the grief distracts from everything else.
Not sleeping at all.
Surprise at feeling good or bad.
Nothing I feel feels right.
Laughing about situations that happened.
Wanting to write down everything that’s connected with you to not lose memories.
Weird time scaling and literally not understanding time.
Having strange reactions to alcohol.
Feeling ill as a reaction to being in the country where I always visited you.
Anger at those around in the last hours.
Anger at communication from family.
Thinking about the body’s disintegration.
Worrying about the body’s whereabouts between service and cremation.
Feeling I can’t explain my feelings
Feeling I can’t explain the experience.
Carrying a heavy weight.
These are my 140 phases of grief.
And that’s not all of them.
I think it’s thousands, really.
Thousands of tiny, nuanced feelings,
one unlike the other.
Millions of heartfelt, varied thoughts,
one different from the next.
Emotions I can’t explain.
Sometimes I have them all at once.
That’s why it can feel so very confusing.
Large numbers of feelings experienced frequently.
The state of mind constantly changing.
And then sometimes
you feel nothing at all.
Numbed by exhaustion.
Distracted from the pain.
And that’s when the worst crash looms.
When it all comes rushing in again
you will fall into
the deepest abyss.
And you will be
What to do?
Let time pass.
Float in the mess of complicated feelings.
The only thing I try to do
is not to add guilt about my feelings to
how I am feeling.
If I feel guilty, let’s say,
I try not to feel guilty
about feeling guilty.
You will have to go through it.
And you can.
But at what price?
Find out later.
Don’t be concerned with that now.
I didn’t include bargaining as I don’t think I do that.
But you feel free to haggle.
I speak for myself.
Make sure to speak for yourself.
© Vroni Holzmann