This Is What Having Anxiety Feels Like


Red baubles spill up out of my canyons, thirsty, expanding. My arm is leaking glitter and ice, hard hot brain firing, a furnace imploding behind two fever eyes. Burnt lips part, expelling sweating smoke snakes. Slip slide, somebody’s crazy. Cray-zay. Everybody stare, hard ice picks, at the cray-zay.

Smoke snakes and coal. I breathe fire; my contribution to the world. Dark things move inside me sometimes, spongy ink patches worming their way across the sheer underside of my skin. I cry needles sometimes. I fill my mouth with bleach and dare myself to swallow. I play chicken in the car and douse my heart in liquor and kerosene until my head blows up like a balloon and my mind stretches out all tight and shiny and I feel nothing and everything and I. Just. Explode.

I laugh like a hyena and drink myself silly. I dare myself to swallow. I never can. I like to play games in the dark. Open your eyes; close them again. Open; close. Is it darker? Are you safer? I like to play all kinds of games. Take a bite and swallow. Dare yourself to be okay. Descend another level. Go into a deeper darkness.

Close your eyes. Feel it breathe into you like a thickness, a soot, an infection permeating every microcosmic particle of the world around you.

Angry bitter happy whole. Chasing. Always chasing.

Sleeping while wide awake, pressing against the glass, tight palms, breathing water and watching bubbles slither away from me, set loose, chasing the surface. I can’t follow.

Mindfuck. Blissful implosion. Ecstasy.

Crash and burn. I always crash. Always burn.

I am really, really good at being fucked up. Sometimes it feels like it’s all I’m good at.

Sometimes I just can’t breathe.

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