A diamond that hits back

I’m hardly past it.
(Mid-30s if you’re wondering.)
And in recent years, have kinda felt like I hate this game.
Cos life plus time is evil.
And seems to equal more aches and pains.
And it’s a sad fact and makes me mad that, whatever I do, I can’t escape this change.
It’s like my inner sadist stands back and toasts my decline, all gross and divine.
Grinning as he tastes champagne.
All the while, I just chase insane.
And weather this draught as I pray for rain.
A sad commuter.
Left on the platform cos I lack form.
No longer able to chase this train.
Cos it’s gone, and is now steaming ahead.
So whilst I’m calm on the surface.
Really I’m nervous, like I’m feeling a threat.
Maybe I can rebuild, you know?
Stitch together with needle and thread.
And plug wounds so I stop bleeding all red.
Cos I can’t muddle along.
I’ve gotta get ahead of the reaper.
My thoughts ice cold.
Like I’ve got my head in a freezer.
With vessels that beat temples.
Like a high temperature fever.
Perhaps I’m not old yet.
But my brow is just cold sweat.
Like I’ve got unsettling features.
And I’m feeling an ill chill, like Kiddo in Kill Bill.
Thinking, why is no one checking the heater?
But I digress.
I wish I could calm my mind, you know?
Just spark up a reefer and drift off in the ether.
Then talk riddles like Gollum, cos I’m an odd little creature.
But in tough times I seek stress and ignore weak legs.
Cos there’s no stopping this cheetah.
I mean, I’ll chase anxious thoughts like precious prey.
And think each one’s a keeper.
I know that it’s better to let ’em pass by and be more zen.
Maybe switch my lifestyle and rock vegan.
Then I can watch the sky for enemies like I fly serenity.
Just call me Joss Whedon.
Cos I’ll slay my monsters like Buffy.
Just trust me, when I say I’m clocking these lost demons.
So if they attack, I’ll strike back with a spiked bat.
And crush pretenders like I’m the boss, Negan.
But wonder, have I trapped myself in this setup?
Is this the price I pay?
Is this the cost of freedom?
Cos when I break for a minute I think, should I stop this feeling?
Because despite my fight, my boat’s full of holes and I’m bailing fast.
I know I’m awkward with help.
I kinda hate to ask.
Maybe I can find solace in making art?
Or playing darts?
Yeah, well… scratch that.
I spend too much time indoors as it is.
Gotta get out… see the world with my backpack.
Not make excuses, where all I do is just backtrack.
Cos honestly, there’s more to life than god damn Facebook and snapchat.
So if I’m not the pilot of my destiny, then I should just give my cap back.
Otherwise, life will be one big ‘remember the time when I almost..’
And just play out in flashback.
So do I stick or twist?
Or double down like in Blackjack?
Find Wonderland, London Below and the Upside Down.
The place where the gaps at.
Where weirdos are welcome and it’s all a bit abstract.That makes sense.
I could probably back that.
There I’d be less nervous.
I’d have purpose.
It’d stop my mind getting ransacked.
So when emotional bombs drop I don’t have to hide from the impact.
I’ll be left silent and intact.
Growing in stature with every step.
A beast amongst petty people, like a giant that’s mismatched.
Then all I have to do is find the life I want is grab hold, and tighten til it snaps.
Which, even if it hurts, and I find I get whiplash.
I’ll know I’m unbreakable.
That, finally, I’m a diamond that hits back.

A letter to my inner narcissist

PART ONE: AN INTERVENTION
Words are words.
And sometimes, words hurt.
Like a simple thing said in a simple way can cut deeper than a curse word.
So if you think I can kill you with a turn of phrase.
Just know that I’m holding back a worse verse.
From beginning to middle to end, it’ll get tougher and tougher.
Till you’re wishing for that comfort of my first third.
Like a drunk the morning after.
Wondering how it all kicked off.
What was it you first slurred?
You sly spy, thinking you’re James Bond but your game’s gone.
And now you’re proper shaken and not stirred.
God’s gift giving women short shrift.
Telling mates, ‘Let’s go chat up these hot birds.’
But they see through you.
Cos you’re vain, narcissistic and self-obsessed.
Maybe you should give your old self a rest?
And form a new body.
One that’s nicer to people.
Instead you seem to have decided you’re evil.
Thinking you’re above the masses.
That your lies are so regal.
The slick venom you spit so thick.
It’s like you’re hiding in treacle.
Employing fantastic dirty tactics.
Cos it’s abundantly clear that you just can’t fight legal.

PART TWO: THE FIGHT BACK
So now, Mr Narcissist, the gloves are off.
And I won’t be hitting a wall soon.
Cos it’s a full moon.
And I’m coming at you with the Hounds of God.
Hunting you down round the clock.
So just when you start to get complacent and think I’m about to stop.
I’ll bring insane pain.
Like Jet Li on a jet-ski.
And go for your throat with a resounding chop.
Have you choke on your words till your tongue burns.
Like you couldn’t taste chilli but now it’s hot.
Cos I’m iron born and fire formed.
I’ll pray as I throw you to the waves and drown this God.
You’ll be pissed, screaming at mist.
Seeing ghosts all around you in this howling fog.
Cos I’m building walls in my psyche.
Watch me mount these blocks.
So with each brick in place I’ll put you in a sicker state.
Square peg in a round hole.
I know you won’t fit this shape.
Balling up your emotions in a fist of hate.
But I kinda know you want to change.
So my help in this matter is probably a gift you’ll take.
Cos when you’re nice to people, they’re nice back.
This is no twist of fate.
So go ahead, look at me blank.
Like what I’m saying just won’t translate.
But if you don’t evolve you’ll just stay cold.
And from this, Mr Narcissist, there’s no escape.

Groundhog boy

When I wake each day.
And think about leaving the house.
I tend to freeze up.
Cos I’m shrouded by doubt.
Forced to bear my stare in the mirror.
But all I find is a frown.
Is this it?
I say, glancing down.
Sizing up my figure like I haven’t realised it’s round.
Cos I’m tubbier these days.
Always saying I’ll hit the gym.
Get ripped and thin.
Build a hard body all sculpted.
One that’s fit for kings.
But right now I’m more pauper material.
Stuck in a dream that feels forced and ethereal.
Wanting to scratch my skin from within.
But not really sure that the cause is bacterial.
Like there’s tiny critters invading my veins.
Breaking me down and planning my burial.
More likely something else troubles me.
This is I ponder as I’m sat drinking bubble tea.
Then a thought seduces me lovingly as it’s introduced suddenly.
I want a simple life.
One that’s calm and puzzle free.
Where it’s totally normal to demand a shrubbery.
Cos there’s a lot to learn from Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
Like how to not charge through life on a silly quest.
Where the end goal seems to be to slowly fail.
Cos when it comes to the human existence.
My body’s more ill-equipped than I’ll admit.
All whispy, spectral and grossly frail.
At best, I’m a phantom man who can’t fathom a plan.
As I amble along this ghostly trail.
Cos words are dead on my lips from life’s perilous hits.
So my creative flow is mostly stale.
And the story I’ll probably tell at the end.
Will likely be that of a lonely tale.
But maybe I’m blowing things out of proportion?
And these words I say are a shakedown, extortion and not to scale.
But in all honesty, I have been feeling lately like I’m locked in jail.
Trapped battling my own personal monster, like Captain Ahab.
With no real clue how I stop this whale.
As it drags me down to the ocean’s floor.
Salt water in my lungs.
Sneaking in like a Trojan Horse.
Till I’m as numb and cold as a frozen corpse.
But this got me thinking.
Everyone needs an antagonist, right?
One that can fight like Tyler Durden.
Because an alter ego is probably the only thing to help me break life’s chains.
So I can be more certain and free of burden.
But whether I get one or not.
It might now be the case that I’ve lost the plot and I’m way off topic.
Spouting nonsense like a lost prophet.
Why can’t I just stop it?
And be practical for once.
So I think in specifics.
Instead of simply resorting to gimmicks.
Painting a picture that doesn’t exist.
And then persisting by forcing the image.
Which is stupid.
Because I’m a force to begin with.
And it’s time I took myself by the scruff of the neck.
Otherwise, middle of the road is as good as it gets.
And I can’t settle.
It’s just not in my nature.
I’m much better at rebelling with truth than being a faker.
But to win, I need weapons to attack my psyche.
Give me a sabre, give me a razor.
Hell, I know origami, I’ll even do it with paper.
Watch me put in work on these rogue thoughts like they’re manual labour. 
Cos I’m relentless. 
And won’t stop with detractors till I weed out the traitors. 
Lay waste to their negativity till they’re nothing but vapour. 
So at the end, in the smoking rubble.
There’s stands a lone figure, a stranger.
All lit up like a saviour.
Turns out that it’s me. 
I’ve broken free.
And become stronger through failure. 
Cos I’ve emerged from my chrysalis.
And I’m all the more greater. 

I get headaches 

I’m not sure when they started to get worse.
But nowadays, the sly pain of a migraine burns through me quicker than bright flames.
Leaving me looking at life.
And wondering how I might change.
Cos it’s only over the last year that it’s become a problem, you see?
Now I often find my head pounding.
Like I’m smothered, drowning and longing to breathe.
My features vexed and grotesque.
Like the poster boy for a monster retreat.
With the veins in my temples straight up stressful.
As they thump out a rhythm and foster a beat.
I wish this was more of a game, you know?
One with an end-of-level boss to defeat.
Cos battling headaches are a mystery, like smoke and mirrors.
And fighting tends to leave me broke and bitter.
Am I being punished?
I mean, granted, I’m no token sinner.
But to me, this game feels rigged.
So if we changed the rules, I wonder how these votes might differ?
Cos the white noise in my head is just a deluge of distraction.
Honestly, as a headline its caption would be ‘mostly filler’.
So I gotta fight back, Tiger style.
You know, like Wu-Tang and Ghostface Killah.
But first I must breathe.
Lest this pain suffocate me, and then I’m liable to choke way bigger.
But it’s dawn now, and the sun is piercing warm clouds like broken grey glitter.
So if I can be more mindful and avoid my moments that trigger.
Then I’ll stand a chance at this dance.
As I navigate fast down this potent, dark river.

Insomnia, please release me

Lately, something’s been bugging me.
Why won’t the Lord of Dreams just come and take me lovingly?
Has he forsaken me suddenly?
Cos I just want a sleep that’s trouble-free.
I mean, he should just let me slip into his warm embrace.
So we can intertwine and fornicate.
Until I all but collapse like a fallen state.
Cos our union needs to happen.
And we need to accept our foolish traits.
So if he wants, he can be shy and coy.
And tease me slow with that lying voice.
But an open mind is all it takes.
And sleep WILL claim me.
But I’m not gonna force this race.
Because a slow seduction is what works best.
I mean, everyone knows it’s what good form dictates.
But right now, insomnia beckons.
As I grudgingly turn my back on the Heavens and stare each night at Hell’s rapidly falling gates.
Cos I know if I beat this, I’ll probably be dubbed one of the lauded greats.
But tonight, I’d love my mind to get just a few seconds swimming in a sea of calm darkness.
Drifting serene in a simple dream.
Through space and time like the Doctor’s Tardis.
Instead, my boat of thought is getting battered by this storm.
So I’m kept awake by whatever wave rocks it largest.
And lying here, in the early hours, I’m amazed at how the mind drifts.
Thoughts pinging like an arcade machine.
Bouncing around in fractured time shifts.
Striking at will, like an assassin set to kill.
Destroying me softly with hundreds of fine hits.
But this rough patch won’t break me.
Mentally, I’m cold fire lately.
Cooking dishes better than those Rick Stein gives.
Cos this is war.
So watch me attack in a power stance with a primed fist.
Until I obliterate unwanted thoughts with positivity.
Hell, I’m going to kill my mind with kindness.

The S.A.D.s (winter has come)

So you’ve heard of S.A.D.s right?
That seasonal winter disorder.
You know… the one where your social skills take flight like a ship in the night and you can’t get aboard her.
And any activity outside the house is only going to exhaust ya.
Cos you just wanna hibernate.
Well I get it bad each year.
And its tendrils settle on me like blanket fear.
But I gotta fight this trait.
Assuming that it’s a flaw in my character.
Cos maybe I’m looking at life through the wrong lens?
And I need a new kind of aperture.
But I lack skill and feel ill; chasing these good vibes.
This ain’t what the doctor prescribed.
I’m such an emotional amateur.
Trying to squeeze positivity out of every beat.
So effectively, I stave off defeat like a social scavenger.
And yeah, maybe I need a CT scan presented in a nice little 3D plan.
If that’s the case, then someone better call an examiner.
Get me signed off work for a month or two.
And yeah I can put on a positive front, it’s true.
But I need to up my game to fool my manager.
And people keep telling me to chill.
Go run a bath for my ills.
To help soothe my troubles while I drown in lavender.
But all I can do is count down the dark days on my threadbare calendar.
Looking ahead to when my mood lifts.
And I stop taking these rude hits.
And then maybe life will feel less like I’m a coasting passenger.
Toasting my demise with haunted eyes as I witness my own exquisite massacre.