A while back I wrote a piece called ‘The Trickster’ to bring awareness to clinical depression. It was based on my personal past experience . Since I wrote that piece, mental health issues have become a cause I wish to champion. In some small way I hope to help rid this dreadful group of illnesses of the misunderstanding and the stigma that cloaks it.
Anxiety, depression, breakdowns, phobias etc all manifest in different ways. The following poem is an attempt to explain one way it manifested itself, in me, in the years after I was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s disease. I basically couldn’t stand anything that remotely suggested absence, loss, things gone. The first line sets the theme, the margin is the gap I already felt in my life and my attempt to accept and adapt to my situation.
Please understand this is not about me, I’m happy and well, I would humbly ask you to remember my words should you know of or come across someone suffering and should you wish to comment bear this in mind.
This is the first time I’ve spoken about this, even to family.
Often I leave a margin in my day,
to fill later with that which I saw.
It’s not for me in one place to stay,
the sudden thud of a closing door.
I like hello’s and will warmly greet,
and be first with a hug and a kiss
but don’t like seeing an empty seat
and prefer long goodbyes to miss.
Always leave a slice on the plate
and a little bit of coffee in the pot,
let leaf fall block the gutter’s grate
and spare my eyes the childless cot.
Maybe on the edge of madness I walk
or perhaps the demon insanity I stalk
seeking his lair
who is the hunter and who is the prey,
I really can not tell
for both in thick undergrowth lay,
and laughed as I fell.
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