Depression

All posts tagged Depression

The Bird Girl

Published December 5, 2013 by rlmcdermott

All these
moons I’ve
painted that
bring no light–

the sun,
the stars,
the sky,

they can
not see
that I am
standing still.

These things
I dream are
dreamed for
someone else–

the bitter fruit,
the barren tree,
the songless bird
are all for me.

I wear them well
around my neck
until I cannot breathe–

I will not stay to
see them leave.

Who reads this
poem cannot
know me–
I didn’t bury
birds they
buried me.The Bird Girl

The Opera Singer

Published June 11, 2013 by rlmcdermott

She sang
in the bathroom–
high notes,
clear,
chaste,
contralateral.

A songbird puffing
cigarettes between breaths,

all was illegal about those years–
the teased hair,
the shaved eyebrows,
the rolled-up skirt.

Violetta everywhere,
father dying
on a red-velvet couch.

Where were the old dreams,
the dreams her parents had for her;
there was a truth to them
that she ignored–

the bottle-shaped dreams
of an alcoholic father,

the woman in the kitchen
silent for forty years
now heard for the first time,

a half-forgotten song,
snatches of melody,
lingering in her memory.

They gave her a watch
so she could know time was running out.
She listened to the ticking; rhythmic
like a song, like a poem,
an alliteration of small explosions
striking the final destination.

The days of summer and sadness,
the little girl heart beating badly,
the pills stolen from a dying father,
the butcher knife hidden in a rotting mattress,
the poems packed in a yellow suitcase–
songs saved for another day.The Opera Singer

Mourning

Published May 1, 2013 by rlmcdermott

you make dinner
you wash the dishes
you set the clock
you lock the door
you go to bed

this is all about being alive
the small gestures
the unconscious acts
the slow forgetting

someone you love has died

when will love return
do you miss it more
than you miss him

even the birds are
silent in this mourning

you listen for their song

suddenly the sunFlowers

Writing Poems In Tokyo

Published March 8, 2013 by rlmcdermott

can you find them
laying loose on the ground

letters about color
color about words
words about you

what a fool
I’ve been to think
that language
can save me

that love can fall
from the sky
and make poems
out of glass and steel and concrete

an old man sat beside me on a traffic island
somewhere between Tokyo Station and Ginza

he smiled

I threw a word at him
he caught it in his hat

he knew me for what I was
someone who would always be waitingFlowers