It’s very difficult to write

when you are depressed

when you know depression

isn’t fleeting

isn’t because something happened

but the same as

a piece of string

will get affixed to tree limbs sometimes

and despite all effort

not be able to get



I envy (you’re not supposed to envy, but I do)

those without this malady

the world would call them stronger

they may blush slightly and say

aw shucks it’s a lottery isn’t it?

I could be just as glum as you if

my dog died, if my car broke down

and in those instances I want

so much to say


that’s not it

at all

it’s crying on your wedding day

from pain not joy

it’s feeling strong at a funeral because

the wires in your head don’t fire right

it’s understanding you’re going to have to try ten times harder

just to stand and be counted

and even then

you may wish

not to be counted

because perversity

is the twin

of sadness

she breaks you into shards

snickering as you

flail to put things back

It’s very difficult to write

when you are depressed

when you know depression

isn’t something you can push through

like your MFA teacher bid

one night when you contemplated

cutting your wrists with broken pottery

almost on a lark when hearing; try to work smarter!

desperation surging unbidden

fast and dark like unfiltered coffee

always leaves its gritty mark

on the ennui of fileted souls.

(This is for all those who were ever shamed for being depressed and having depressive symptoms, for feeling they were ‘less than’ because they could not function seamlessly as others appeared to. I see you. You are counted).

18 Replies to “The nadir of naught”

  1. This is one of the most beautiful and true pieces of writing I have ever see. I certainly hope to find it in an upcoming collection or anthology. Just because so many of your works are so stellar, does not give us license to NOT out and applaud each one that speaks to us. Brava, my friend. This will help many people who read it. It has already helped me.

  2. Thank you. I am being published by Finishing Line in a few months, but this poem isn’t in it. I so appreciate you. Thank you. Thank you. My friend. We help each other by being there for one another when others cannot be.

  3. ‘cutting your wrists with broken pottery’
    I read this as ‘poetry’ at first – ironic!
    Brilliantly expressed and very much because of its truth. I hope that you are well.

  4. The worst part being, there are so many who say ‘oh I’ve been depressed yeah it was bad I got over it in a day or two’ and you think – yup .. they’re never going to understand and without meaning to they’re always going to judge.

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