Night rain on the window pane is the night sweat of my fevered life dream. Time bloats like the reflection I try to avoid. Tears on the bedroom floor for however many minutes or hours. I crawled in here, felled like a sick elm, sickly scooped out, hunger hollowed, word emptied. Hands...hands that feel like they don't belong to me any more. Something moves within them, puppets them: a tingle like lightning.
too cold to hold a teacup -
wrists are winter twigs
Fingernails mauve-mottled, heart struggling to pump, circulation slow-crawling. Hands are too blue-numb to grip, and I'm watching the teacup slip...
white pottery shards
mosaic of tannin stars -
the carpet is stained
I found an anthology of short stories I first read years ago, before dream winced into nightmare. Opening the book, a slip of paper floats out, white-dazzly as a snowflake. My hospital admission letter, its sudden white shock bookmarking a favourite story.
Bedtime stories. Sweating between the sheets with Ray Bradbury, electric singing sentences pressed to my skin. The push and pull of his prose singing my body electric, giving me a word-f**k I won't forget.
Ray Bradbury's everywhere, he's in the air, his words arranging themselves into kaleidoscope patterns; strange lexicon of snowflakes, of stars. But voices are reassuring me it's just a little fever dream.
Strange how the memory sea floods me as the mind becomes ever more disconnected; the past's wisps floating like feathers through the fog. Fever flicker of faces: Sarah's, silver-shimmery through tears, her blonde hair haloed in teardrop light.
Tonight, anorexia's voice is the knife strike in a slasher movie; a killing, shrilling eardrum drilling. It's the chainsaw buzz scything corn, the shadow knife behind the Psycho curtain.
My immune system is failing, body breaking down.
waves of nausea
crashing on my body's shore -
slow fast slow fast slow
stop start stutter slow stop start -
Sibilant strobe of whispers, voices; the past's echoes, floating through fever fog...we don't think you're looking after yourself...you're a risk to yourself...I'm sectioning you under Section 2 of the Mental Health Act...
The mind-trap minefield narrows to a single word: how?
How has it all come to this?
Copyright © Charlotte Puddifoot | Year Posted 2017
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