the broiling of the doves is like a whisper

the cold foot stone floor wandering off into the bathroom of despised hearts

the moments are glowing, the deepwarm is dragging onward, the greyness of it all is a whimper in my throat, swallowing the feathered pills, rolling into the earth

the heart is choking, the chests all tighten at once

the tips rigging the hooks into the sail of my ribs are pulling, gasping, worming their way against the back of the spine, branching out like there’s nowhere to go

and creating an inner gravity, massive like the feelings

weighted down with fear. I remember the black bag

the only safety latch keeping off the pressure

the nights walking through the backwoods of the mind

barefoot in youthful squalor and gathering calmness from the floor

so clutch the breath close to your chest

stand under the shower for long periods of time

pretend you are just a lost pupil, that you will be good enough when the instant is right

act like you have learned from watching and eat like nothing has happened today

fight the pencil on your hand, the slow churn of the pages in the book

remember how it feels to finish something while forgetting everything

sit in the seat and wrap your coat tightly around your shoulders

like keeping everything in will keep the old whispers out of your chest cavity

nod your head as the train sinks beneath a new city,

suck in the fresh air like it’s running out.

remind yourself these tendrils of anxiety are not the closing of your heart ventricles

and forget that they might be one day.

[drawing by Agnes-Cecile]

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2 thoughts on “autophobia [fear of the self]

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