Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Unwelcome Visitor

I’m so drowsy; I need tea. Coffee!
Something with sugar and milk and caffeine
But that little dragon is curled up on my chest
digging in needle-claws
just above my heart

He loves caffeine even more than I do
He likes to take the energy my mind needs
Keep it all for himself
And I draw a breath in
I can’t let it out
he's crushing my lungs

Sometimes, if I let him feed, he grows
Then he holds captive not just my heart
Not just my lungs
But slithers his long neck and tail beneath both breasts
all the way around to meet between my shoulderblades
in a python's embrace
my ribs are cracking

I feel his heart beat scorching against mine
heat and tightness that won’t be dispelled by indrawn breath
or gasping cries
I scream sometimes
and cry
I beat my forehead on the steering wheel
and the gentle thuds do nothing to drown out
that little dragon
who whispers to my heart all the fears he reads there
“He’s mad at you”
“She’s never liked you”
“Why did you ever let them see your story?”
They hate you
They hate you
And don’t you hate you, too?

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