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Elise Jackson Aug 2022
i'm picking my nails at the dinner table
thinking of ways to tear myself apart
wondering if you'd even agree with me right now
if you'd be proud of me
or are you yelling at me from wherever you are

i'd like to think you're somewhere nice
in a pool where the water is crystal clear
sipping something strong and watching me ruin my life

sometimes i'd rather you turn the tv off and throw the remote

this show ***** anyway
how long can you really watch me dissociate? I've been here for hours.
Heidi Werner Sep 2021
I imagine walking on a balance beam
I have only just gotten the hang of it
Before this moment I had always fallen off.
I know that I'm going to mess up
I keep telling myself
“its ok to mess up you’re still learning”
Yet I feel an overwhelming need
To be successful, just this once.
To complete my walk.
And I do, I complete the walk.
So, because things have gone well
I walk again, and I find success
I begin to trust my own two feet
I walk again and again and again
Each time I make it to the other end
Each time I become more prideful
This next time I move too quickly
I try to go faster, still making it
I stagger half-way through
But I think nothing of it
So I hasten my step
And I stagger again
But my mind blocks out
The possibility of falling.
I go faster and faster
Until I am at a full on sprint
No longer am I teetering
On this beam below my feet
I believe that I am perfect
No one can touch me
I believe that I am the best
And that no one else can go this fast
I am in competition with the entire world
I am in competition with only myself
Only myself
I am nothing
I am a fake
I am useless
I am ugly and worthless
And the exact opposite of perfect
I quickly mask these thoughts
Telling myself
“You can push through”
And for a time I do
I have boundless energy
I can run as fast as possible
I make it to the other end of the balance beam
Then suddenly an impulse
My body takes over
And without explanation
I am flying through the air
100 miles a minute
Crashing into a bottomless abyss
I lie still for a moment on the mat below
Looking up towards the beam
Where I once stood so proud
I pick myself up
I decide I am an elite gymnast
And I am an astronaut
I am a long distance runner
And a 5 star chef
And a doctor
And a bird
And a rock climber
And a rock
And a brilliant professor
And an angel
And a world renowned artist
And, and, and, and
I twirl around and dance
I sing to no one
I am an opera singer
I rush to the water fountain
It is Niagara Falls
Splash, “watch out, you’ll get wet”
I say this to an audience of no one
I am an actor on broadway
“Ain’t no one round here as good as me”
Then in my periphery
There are shadows
I cannot stop moving
Never stop moving
If I stop moving the shadows will crawl around me
Creeping in through my nose
My mouth and my ears
Telling me things I never want to hear
So I run
I run so hard and so fast
That I forget everything
I am existing inside each moment only
I don’t know where I am or where I am heading
but I continue to run
Until I am surrounded by trees
And I remember everything again
I remember the balance beam
Why did I leave the balance beam?
It felt natural and simple
to just walk
to just walk and stay balanced
Why am I in the woods?
And then the thoughts come
And the shadows come with them
So I climb a tree
In hopes that the shadows
Will pass quietly underneath
I am painfully quiet
But the thoughts are still here
I cannot hide
I cannot run
I cannot get away
They race in my brain
They course through my veins
They are evil thoughts
They taunt me, saying
“This world is without reason”
“Your life is pointless”
“You are crazy”
“You will never be anything”
“Jump! jump! jump!”
I am high up in this tree
I am safe from the shadows here
But the thoughts never leave
I cannot break free
So I give in
Maybe if I listen to them
I will release the pressure that builds inside me
Suddenly I am compelled
To leap from this tree branch to the next
I fling myself through the air
believing I will fly like a bird
Because the thoughts said I could
I black out as I fall back to the earth
Suddenly I am on the ground
Not even remotely sure
Of how I got here
I lie there for a few moments
And then out of the corner of my eye
I see the shadows
They move through the woods like smoke
Like a black fog
Like death creeping towards me
So I quickly pull myself to my feet
And I am in a full on sprint once more
I don’t know which direction I am headed
Or where I am
Or if I'm even running
And then it hits me
A car
I am on the highway
flying over the hood of a sedan
Crashing into the ground
My skin burns as it moves across the asphalt
I become a mound In the middle of the road
I imagine that I am a pile of dirt
I will not move
I will just do what dirt does
What does dirt do?
My body burns, my skin is on fire
Can dirt catch fire?
The world moves slow
Does dirt move faster than the world around it
Does dirt experience time differently?
Someone is talking to me
Which is absurd
Who talks to dirt?
Sirens crowd the traffic of my cochlear nerve
It is the only thing I can hear
My brain starts to malfunction
Like a computer flooded with a virus
I hear the siren repeat
It loses a note with each repetition
Until all I hear is one note
One note
I close my eyes
I am completely numb
Something in me knows I have to fight
“I've forgotten what I started fighting for”
I believe that if my eyes are closed
No time passes
I allow this break in time to go on
I need to separate myself from time for a moment
Allow myself to think
To reassess
To gather what has occurred
What has occurred?
Feeling a little panicked at the thought of not knowing
I open my eyes
I am in a room
I try to move
But my body won’t listen to my intentions
I look down and see metal rods sticking out of me
Now, I remember
I am a robot getting serviced
That’s all this is
It’s probably why I malfunctioned
No biggie
a robotic technician walks in
she asks me how I feel
I answer
“What an absurd question,
Robots do not feel”
She looks at me with kind eyes
“Ok, thanks for your input”
She leaves the room
Closing the door behind her
The darkness licks at the bottom of the door
It seeps through and envelopes the room
I cannot see
I hold my breath
I do not feel
I give up
The darkness begins to course through my veins
It twists through every corner of my being
Walking through the corridors of my body
Leaving menacing thoughts in its wake
Then, without warning
Everything becomes red
Red feels like pain
It tastes like needles
So I try to occupy my mind with things
Anything to distract me from the pain
I scream audibly
I scream a song
If Im singing I am distracted
“I'm a little teacup short and stout
Here is my handle here is my spout”

I imagine all this
Stuck inside my own mind
Making up foolish stories
But, this is what it's like
This is what it will become
This is what I will become
Bipolar seeps through my brain
Attaching old forgotten pathways
Lighting them all up at once
Then with similar speed
Making them all go dark
In and out, up and down
A never ending merry-go-round
But, somewhere in all this
Is me.
Viseract May 2021
Mist-minded, clouded thoughts
Can't seem to focus, or keep rapport
Importance is relevant, irrelevant I dwell
In this cartography, well-drawn Hell

Zipped up lips, verbiage tripped
The spoken, delivery, edge unclipped
Harsh and cold, worn limestone
Regardless of polish, I'm overgrown

What feels real is this heart of steel
All else surrounds, of fabric, of gown
Dressed up nice to masquerade
False-tipped smiles, dead parade.

The forge burns true, just underneath
My love, my Sun, I shall bequeath
Hardened and cold, aftermath of the craft
Add a little heat and reveal my heart.
Reality can feel like the worst illusion, but when it fades, my heart awaits
Pyrrha Feb 2021
I feel captive, hostage, trapped and bound
Within the corners of my own mind
Deep within my skin

I feel like there  is no exit sign, no escape, no doors or windows
But I feel so free
Like I can be, do, see or say anything at all

I push everything aside
Tell my heart and mind that I don't feel a thing
I turn my senses off and I escape

I go where no one else can see
I know people I've never met
And I've been places no ones dreamt

But I  can't help it
I can't turn it off
I can't escape when I dissociate

I am a prisoner inside my mind
I've been hurt and this is how I cope
But I don't feel anything

I only feel the feelings of someone I am not
Someone I can never be
I have memories of someone foreign living in my skin

But I can't help it
I need to leave, pause, reset and breath
I can escape when I dissociate
Viseract Jan 2021
Falling silent when I speak
Clamour loudly as I weep
Stitched up mouth, who am I now?
Grunts of pain, the only sound

Ignored back then and still today
Excluded always, as I fade
Then they ask me why I'm quiet
I don't choose to sit in silence

Are you ok? I'm just fine
My reply, a dotted line
That which i ask is what I fear
Query turned, and so I steer

I speak of games, I speak of songs
I ignore the list of wrongs
All the shadows' whispered words
They cause my skull to hurt

I am calm, I am the storm
In the dark I'll be reborn
In my lust I drive away
They do not need to stay

Woe is me, I'm all alone
Typing poems on my phone
Isolated by personality
Dissociated from reality
Faeryn Sep 2020
There's a stranger in my head and the mirror
i know its not me
there's no way that its me
glazed eyes staring back
pale skin, cried for days
its not me
i'm watching someone else's life
or sometimes i wonder if i exist
there's a part of reality i can't find
has anyone else realized life doesn't exist
we could run away and never cone back
whatever we do doesn't matter
i'm a ghost that sees farther than the sky
i feel trapped in an open daze
w h e r e a m i
dissociation at its finest
Maria Monte Sep 2020
What is in a name?
An identifier. Christine. Paul. Bernard.
A sense of uniqueness. Foxy. The Rock. Buddy.
A personality. John. Chad. Karen.
A name is something to hold onto.

What is my name?
A label to keep me concrete when people forget
A phrase to pull me back down when I drift
An identity so that I don't mold into everyone else
My name keeps me together

But what does my name sound like?
I forgot where I placed my strengths
I forgot the way it was shaped to my body
My person slips away from the letters as they form into your mouth
and get lost in the bottomless sea of identifiers

Who am I?
Billboards and signs that paint "fragile" across a face like mine
Small, petite, figures that whisper "prey" and warn me of the big bad wolves
Unfamiliar faces that tell me that I am "too much" as my bones grind against them and their hands try to cup me smaller
there is nothing to keep me from vanishing

Who am I?
Worker # 187, making a dime as they make a dollar?
A father's daughter, a person to be handed and never to stand on it's own?
Am I my weakest moments?
Am I my triumphs?

Who am I?
My own mocking voice screaming, giggling, obscenities before I catch myself
My own motherly tone re-directing me from the bad roots in my childhood
I am this thing and then I am another
We are so inconsistent, as people

We forget to keep our names close to our hearts
To choose our own identities,
let ourselves remind each other that we are
who we choose to be.

My name, it echoes against the cages of my body
and it wraps around me
reassuring me, reminding me, piecing me back together
breathing life back into me.
Aspen Jun 2020
“Perhaps I have left to many pieces of myself in the books i’ve read”
“I have left so much of myself in so many places, in different worlds,
with different people.”
“ I have broken my heart over
and over
with all the endings i have read”
I don’t know how to live in this world when I have been in so many better than this one.
Lilywhite Jan 2020
toss away the memory of me in a disheveled mess of cleanliness—

like a lost treasure, bury me in your bedside drawer.

No one will know that I once stood here
Lets be clear...

I was never at home with you.

So when you feel frantic and lost and you’re searching for the things that help you disassociate, instead of finding that thing or two, you’ll find me, staring back at you.
Dark Smile Nov 2019
i pull my eyeball out of my socket
or perhaps,
i remove my socket from my eyeball
the moon is howling
the wind is shining
i grin a grin of blood and ... joy?
eyeball in hand,
or was it the socket?
maybe it's the hand in my eyeball
either way
i take a step towards the water
i feel it lapping at my ankles
i lie down face first
the water breathes me in and
we float
in that uterine comfort we once knew
when I open my eye/socket/hand
i see that i am in a tank
the light refracts across the water
i worm my way to the base of the tank and i
my body is too heavy
i reach between my legs
pull out my guts
they slither away into the dark abyss
i close my eye/socket/hand
i sleep
i've been dissociating a lot lately and this is my attempt at explaining what it feels like.
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