Literary Yard

Search for meaning


By: Claire Scott

psych ward

They say a place of healing
They say for your own good
Doctors with white coats flapping,
Starched storks armed with
prescription pads like flight
attendants. Coffee, tea, wine?
Zyprexa, Geodon, Seroquel?
Mix and match from day to day
Groggy, nauseous, shaky, then
More drugs to cure the cure
Remeron, Wellbutrin, Lamictal
No belts, shoelaces, cell phones
All removed by a listless guard
Locking your identity in a closet
For your own good, they say
Who the hell are they talking about
A clumbering door lets people out
But not you, the door shutting
Ominously, steel bolts sliding
Clanking, echoing, sealing off a tomb
Patients talking, patients touching
White murmurs indecipherable
Doctors fatuous foolish gods
Self important, self appointed
If you agree to be ill they will
Release you, a danger to self
Or others? a Hobson’s choice
A fucking joke, only the joke is you
You hear death sighing on your shoulder,
As you struggle to exist, your stomach
Removed yesterday, the penalty for not
Eating the grey flat food, toxic and
Served with a blunt fork, no knives
Here, for your own good
Wilted roses in a chipped vase,
TV glued to stagnant sitcoms,
Plastic people with plastic words,
Repetitive, lifeless, the only workshop
Requires sitting in a blue room to calm
Your nerves that are standing up,
Sticking out, ridiculous, ludicrous
Their camera eyes everywhere
Following you, tracking your thoughts
Days and nights blur timeless,
No clocks, no news, you are flatlining,
Floating in a fog of forgetfulness,
The essential you eclipsed in a cloud
Of pills in tiny paper cups no choice
A shambling derelict of monotony
Laced with poison, struck down midflight.

You finagle a cigarette pass and leave
With a friend for one exact hour
Conning her into coins for the phone
And suddenly darting underground
To take the train to freedom
For your own good.



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