A therapist's voice



Search for cracks of light

in empty corners,

Rest your head where Devil’s Ivy

could not survive,

Feel its earth for nourishment,

Notice its desert texture,

Notice how neither of you have been watered

in weeks,


Breath in,

Count the amount of times

your father ever held you

in positive regard,

Breathe out.


Don't look at your reflection.


You may see an intruder in your body,

An abuser in your body,

A stranger-


Protruding frame,

Hips you can't body shame away,

Swallowing your gut as you end this verse,


You may see failed attempts

at living

and dying,


I hope you find success in some part of life.


Search for euphoria

at the depths of dysphoria,

Find contentment

in the climax of all tension,

Grip firmly onto sharp objects,

Avoid regrettable intentions,

Each thought a dagger,

Slicing, Shaping, Carving


My World

is half what it was this morning,

A fraction of what it was yesterday,

There is no knowing

what the next hour will bring.


My morning begins

in most people's afternoons,


I am no night owl insomniac,

I am sunrise that sets      in the south.


I am the moon-              split

and spat upon,

Orbiting incorrect planets

in distant solar systems,

Black sheep

in nuclear human family.


Therapist speaks

to me as I-

Clutch to carpet,


Still trying to convince me

To find cracks of light,


I am still trying to convince

My lungs,

Oxygen has not left the room.


Note: This poem was first published in Admissions: Voices within Mental Health (Upswell Publishing, 2022)

The aim of this project is to share lived experiences of mental health via poetry. Therefore, some of the workshop content may potentially trigger some readers. If you require mental health support or assistance, you can call the Wellways Helpline plus a list of free confidential 24/7 support lines can be found here. You are not alone in your journey.