Existential Angst: Three Poems Inspired by the Struggle of Life

closeup photo of primate
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This Thing in the Mirror

In the mirror,

It’s me.

My reflection.

That I see.

Is that really me?

Is that really me?

I see vulnerability.

I see hope.

All my thoughts,

Come from this thing.

This thing,

Staring back at me.

I smile,

Knowingly.

I smile, sweetly,

At the reflection,

Staring back at me.

It scares me.

In the mirror,

That thing,

Smiling back at me.

Is it beauty?

Is it sin?

Staring intensely,

I know not where to begin.

So I stare,

Until I scare,

This thing,

That is me.

Staring so sullenly,

Back at me.

Yes, I have actually stood at a mirror long enough to scare myself. I’ve always found it odd to occupy a physical being for years, only to eventually be forced to leave it. I have so many questions for why we live and why we die. Science only explains the process that can be objectively described. I’m interested in why we exist and why in the form of a physical being? I must say, however, that the physical body is a marvel of mind blowing functions, each system intrically and masterfully created that miraculously functions for years. Collectively, our systems work together with many built-in overrides to maintain homeostasis. It’s pretty incredible! But seriously, why is there pain and suffering? And why do we find ourselves engaged in such mindless pursuits much of the time? I have many hypotheses. Many times if I am laughing wildly it is because of the absurdity of it all.  I sure hope one day I get an answer!  LOL.

selective photography of primate
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Played and Caged

Ragged, Ripped,

Enraged.

Trapped, Cooped,

Caged.

Kicked, Sucked,

Dried.

Deceived, played,

Lied.

Taken, Killed,

Carried.

Lost, Forgiven,

Buried.

Well! I went there on that one! I’m sure we have all felt this way at one time or another in our lives. It’s a bit extreme, but was written during a time when I felt betrayed by a friend and was more than likely pretty depressed abut it. For some of us, we are unlucky and experience a string of bad experiences with people or employers and it can be devastating. Often, these times can challenge us to examine our own lives. For me, it was that I needed to develop better boundaries. I am still working on doing so!

animal animal photography close up cute
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The Endless Cycle

Streaming

Soaked

Shattered 

Scattered

And I can’t pick it up

Flat

Floored

Fooled

Fat

Frustrated

And I can’t fix it

So, Throw it up

Rip it up

Throw it against the wall

Tie it up

And beat it

Send it outside into the cold

Laugh at it

Lie to it

Leave it

Lonely

Lost

Eat it

Surrender

Smile

Accept it

Grin and bear it

And live

Cycle

I wrote this many moons ago about the perpetual cycle of mood swings I experience in relation to my Bipolar I illness and my inability to ever have complete control over them. It’s enraging, at times, to suffer and not be able to truly articulate to others how it feels to have your emotions and perceptions hijacked abruptly with absolutely no warning! I feel wrangled in and drug around while bystanders call out orders for me to do better. It’s a hell I wish on no one and it is challenging, to say the least, to put into words so that people can “get it”. I feel kinda like Dorothy in Oz, except the disorienting experience happens almost every month or so and there is no place called “home” that I can click my heels to and feel at peace again. Perhaps the answer has been within me the entire time, but if so I have been searching like mad, unable to find it. Life can be a disorienting cycle for someone who suffers from a persistent and severe mental illness and I’m infinitely amazed sometimes at how much I have accomplished despite the disease that limits me. I will keep struggling forward and find the answer, or perhaps I will sit back and “accept” it all and stop fighting to find one. Maybe the answer is letting go with a smile.

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Author: landundefined

I am in the process of healing after a decade where I lost myself to a narcissistic abusive relationship, my sister's addiction, and a mental health disorder that has rendered me currently unemployed. I am writing to help myself and others on the journey of forgiveness and love towards healing and wholeness.