I didn’t realise it at the time because my mind was so broken, but this is how I felt physically when hospitalised during a nervous breakdown.


Someone has held her nerve-endings over a flame,
singed synapses, neurons fizzled out, no connection.

Her veins are still under her skin but they have been shredded
with a fine knife, a skilled slice, each individual vein horizontally frayed.

The brain feels unbearably heavy, anchored in its cell
where escape is not an option, it bears its pregnant weight.

A fine mist settles in front of her eyes, the familiar glaze that shrouds
her sight, the hazy mess that does not leave when she closes her eyes.

She is unaware of the limbs attached to her body, they don’t belong
to her, they only move when forced, bringing with them an intolerable effort.

Her face is scratched all over, vertical scarlet streaks, marks of a domestic
struggle between this girl and her brain, evidence of her surrender.

Trembling hands clutch clumps of hair, harshly plucked from her scalp,
holding something that is dead to remind herself that she is alive.

Lips are swollen from the biting, throat is raw from the screaming,
skin is ashen, she does not know if she is hot or cold.

Her lungs move violently in her chest, matching the pattern of her heart,
forcing life through her mangled body, erratic breathing to equal her behaviour.


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