Confession

I partook in a 5 day poetry workshop focussing on the soul, and it was a real challenge as my poetry is not so introspective. This is one of the poems I wrote:

One day, my soul
I will feel you
I will feel solace in your infinite wisdom
Some say our souls
dwell within our bodies
But I know it is our bodies
which dwell within our souls

One day, my soul
Your magnanimous love
will be treasured at a time
When this Earthly vessel
wraps its anxious grief
around a troubled mind
Lost in a sea of tumultuous emotion
My soul cries out for
the empathy of humankind
And I don’t know if
I will make it
in this shattered time
of broken promises
But I know there is a plan
within your wisdom

One day, my soul
I will love this damaged skin
This damaged skin my soul
is forced to live within
I feel so ugly
yet I feel so selfish
knowing this is the
path of my soul
I feel like heartfelt intimacy
is a distant, far-fetched goal
But I know there is love
within your wisdom

One day, my soul
My mind will be
a homely dwelling
A place where
psychiatrists and pharmacies
aren’t relentlessly selling
their miracle pills
and psychological solutions
Trading a balanced mind
for physiological pollution
But I know
there is a peace
within your wisdom

One day, my soul
My anxieties
will be a forgotten dream
The times I pound at
the I’m-not-normal door
And want to shout and scream
And I don’t know
if I will ever feel human again
I feel like I’m trapped in a hysteria
that blights the soul of men
But I know
there is sanctuary
within your wisdom

One day, my soul
We will soar free and fly
Hearts in restful places
where the sunrise
meets the sky
The oceans will ebb and flow
with the fullness of my being
And Cherubim will fill the heavens
at the unity they’re seeing
And I know
there is perfection
within your wisdom

©2020 Sarah Drury

Strait Jacket

I am not an exceptional human being
for we all wear clothes
Slobbing around in PJ’s when
our tranquilized, minuscule world
is encapsulated
in a space called home
Killer heels when we’re facing the
fucked up world and we remember
who we are, and we straighten
our crowns
Perchance a smidgeon of warpaint
as our battle cries holler into
societal combat
Cherry lips and spider lashes
spun with purest L’Oreal

But I?
I wear a white strait jacket
White as in hospital issue
boiled to death grey
Sanitised and purity leeched
It looks rather smart with
my lithium eyes and my
lunacy smirk
I don’t wear it for ladies’ luncheons
as padded cells are lonesome bistros
And all that cutlery is contraband
And I’m not fucking Houdini

When my couture isn’t a
hospital inspired affair
I am living one
Valium junkie
Lithium chick
Watching the wall for
the clock tock ticks
which govern the drugs
which make me well
But make me sick
Don’t go high, you’ll crash
Don’t go low, you’ll crash
Can anyone tell me
how to score
a gram of sanity?

Does anyone want to
hold my strait jacket for me?
Try it on?
Wear it with me?

©2020 Sarah Drury

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

I Had a Dream

I thought about ending it all
of that sweet release
as I drifted off to sleep
Would it be all devils and pitchforks
and sunstroke in Hell?
Or would it be angels and clouds
and harps and Prozac?

And I had a dream
Like Martin Luther King
Except in mine I was knocking on
the doors of heaven
and they were locked
It said no mentally ill in here
And at first I thought maybe
they hadn’t seen
my clean heart
I had showered today and
that was a start
I didn’t look like a hooker
with my fuck me heels
and ripe cherry pout
So let me in

And I had a dream
like Martin Luther King
that even in my darkest hour
With pills in my palms
and debating the relevance of
my existence
Perceptions of the mentally ill
Would lose their sting of sour
Mental, loony, crackpot, psycho
lunatic, schizo
negative, negative, negative, negative
Tie me in a straight jacket
Lock me in a padded cell
And don’t forget the lithium!

And I had a dream
like Martin Luther king
But the people of colour
were free
and the mentally ill were slaves
And society was a hotbed of prejudice
And they put us in glass cages
And they paid a pound a peek
And they laughed
and they laughed
and they laughed

And I had a dream
Like Martin Luther King
where I knocked on Heaven’s door
and it was closed
Like the job applications
Like the lovers I’d had
Like the aspirations of being
‘normal’
Like my fake faced friends
Like my destiny

And I thought of the one thing
that tethers me to this Earth
And his tiny hand slipped in mine
And his tender heart healed my wounds
And I knew heaven
didn’t need another angel

©2020 Sarah Drury

Procrastinate

Feeling a bit lazy today and a bit lethargic. Could do without it as I have a million things to do.

I sit here
I procrastinate
Tv blaring
MTV churning out
the usual generic shit
Smooth guy
Don’t know why
this pathetic, inane drole
is called a mega hit
Put your clothes on woman
The diva title
don’t comfortably fit
Where’s your dignity?
Do you think it’s sexy
I know you think you’re lit
But you look like
a fame hungry tart
from where I’m sitting
in my baggy PJ’s
Shit all around me
Last night’s grimy pots
insulting the kitchen sink
Head’s pounding
Just wish I could think
Life’s got me in a head slam
Just wish I could move
Get my arse into gear
So I sit here and
the tears fall like
molten coffee beans
into the bitter dregs
of my Nescafe

Procrastinate
I fear
the social worker will
pop round
In for a penny
in for a pound
and do I give a fuck
I often wish my laziness
could just be mistook
for depression
Black dogs could
thankfully do the housework
I’d pay them in Prozac
and electro convulsive therapy
But I’m no dog trainer
My lackadaisical soul
is the astronomical fee
They have the leash
They’ve hoodwinked me
and I cannot see
the woods for
the piles of inertia

Procrastination
Write another poem?
Paint another masterpiece?
Should I pour out my soul?
I’m no Leonardo DaVinci
But slaving over dirt
is not my life goal
Drudgery, fucking drudgery
Washing up to the roof
Socks in piles waiting to
be sorted
Waiting for their soulmate
But my willpower’s contorted
My power lies in
the pen
not the fucking hoover

So, I procrastinate
I procrastinate

©2020 Sarah Drury

To the Misogynists

When I had a lengthy spell in hospital, many years ago, I was very poorly. I was on what is known as a ‘one to one’, which meant I had to have a nurse with me at all times. One evening, whilst sitting in my room watching TV with the staff nurse, he turned around and said to me, “you know that people like you should never have children, right??” Those words really hurt me and he should never have said that. I am now, many years later, mother to a son with Autism, and although i have times when I struggle with my mental health, my son has helped me stay as sane as I possibly can because I am all he’s got after his father died. He keeps me strong, and was a turning point in my life after many years in psychiatric hospitals.

I wrote this poem about the nurse’s cruel words.

Just because
Mental illness blights
My fragile mind
Just because
My soul travels
In divergent dimensions
Gives you
no fucking right
To play God
Or Hitler
With my right to
Bear child

Casting aspersions
Of prejudice
You broke me
May as well
Rip out my womb
And gift my ovaries
To the mentally stable
Yet barren

Mothers are born
Not made
Merciless are your
Arrogant aspersions
As callous words
Plummet in placentas
Of castigation
Blood staining
Your misogynist shoes

My right to
Bear child
Never smashed by
The patriarchy
Will be

I pray the vitriolic men
Within whose care
Rest women vulnerable
And broken
Embrace humanity
Whilst the tongues
Of those ridiculing
My maternal potential
Are bound in
Repentance
Regret
and
Retribution

©2020 Sarah Drury

Valium

Valium
My old cathartic friend
Take a seat beside me
Fuck the ‘don’t get addicted’ trend
Wash down the pill
Act out the finale
That never fucking ends
In your dramatic air
Of sensory obliteration

Take my mind far away
To some fond childhood day
When neurosis
Was a word
I hadn’t even heard
When psychotic, insane voices
Were just another
Exhibitionist exotic bird
And now when I
Hear them singing
They snarl in tuneless, grimy
Sinister threats
Like my life
Smiling at strangers
When the face in the mirror
Is full of acrid, bitter regrets
And hatred

So I pop a Valium
And wait for that glorious
Blanket of don’t give a fuck
I think my friends and family
Must have mistakenly mistook
My strangeness
For not taking my meds again
Does anyone really think
I would inflict that
Suicidal pain
I’d rather stick
Hot needles in my
Eyes
I’m not that fucking crazy.
But who gives a shit now
The chill starts to spread
I’m starting to feel lazy
If I could bottle this feeling
I could peddle it
Drug dealer hazy
Street cred
As fuck

I pop a Valium
It steals my thoughts
Those charming, psychotic quirks
Mad hatter moments
That can’t be bottled and bought
And I am Alice
Lost in Wonderland
And there ain’t no tea parties here
Just psychosis in a teacup
And lithium cake with a side helping of fear
As the medics binge
on the cream
Of condescension

But you, my faithful friend
I may be addicted
But fuck it
Lithium chick
The side effects are contradicted
What is better?
Blood on the hands of a psychiatrist
Or sanity in the minds
Of the heavily medicated
And I owe you
My fucking life

©2020 Sarah Drury

Queens of Lunacy

Six twenty a.m.
Meds not kicked in
Yet
Another psychosis
Again?
I hear the birds
Free bitches
Tunes as though
Life has no locks
No dirty ditches
To dump
The head fucked
In

Like us
Queens of lunacy
Boasting our
Lithium crowns
Regal but
On a different
Frequency
Time for pill pop
Want the fucking
Crazy shit to stop
The clock
Ticks
Out of time

Psycho mum
Drag my bones
Bust my butt
Necking my meds
Like a Valium slut
Popping the pills
To get free entry
To a sanity club
Crazy has
A price tag
I can’t afford
Ring a roses
We all stay mad

I’m fucked

©2020 Sarah Drury