A poem about cancer, or anything really

4am and I’m filled with it
the taste in my mouth
like I’m stuffed with coins
each finger filled with it
4am and it’s here in the room
with me I’ve been swallowed
by cancer I’m a nodule
floating in a sea of cancer
I breathe it in I float in it
I’m drowning

6am and it’s getting light
time to pack it away
time to squash it down
into my lungs my bones
time to swallow it down

it’s in me don’t let me scream

I started blogging at fantasticmetastaticme.wordpress.com. I write poems at fmmewritespoems.wordpress.com. You can follow either, or both – or neither, obviously! – depending on your interest.

Snapshot – pandemic insomnia

3am and I’m awake
not even sure what I’m thinking

out there, there are bean plants
unfurling in the dark,
those fat first leaves,

and I’m wondering
what will happen now, and

out there, the stars
are moving in fixed patterns
jazzed by satellites

and I have fragments of fears
and questions
and an emptiness in my belly, and

out there, moths are waltzing
in their crazy dances

and I’m awake
listening to your breathing, and

out there, bats are diving,

and we have no guide,
no rhythm, no pattern –
we are unfurling
fractal humans
seeking a new shape.

Just sneaking in to Earthweal this week – wondering about the future, full of uncertainty. As usual with Brendan’s prompts, my¬† head is full of half-thoughts and broken images, and a sense of urgency that I find hard to capture.


…is all those white things
that I never caught –
that butterfly that danced
away across the garden,
that white cat that
stalked off, disdainful.

…is a pearl, dropped
in a tide pool – I lost it
as I looked for it – swirled
up sand and mud, hid it
from myself.

…is a white castle, on
a distant hill, but every path
I take doubles and twists,
leaving me here, alone.

…is a white rabbit
that I chase down endless
midnight tunnels.

…a diamond, that fell
from a ring I always wore.
I’ve searched for it,
but haven’t found it.

The insomniac’s cry. Another mix of metaphors for Bjorn at dVerse.

Insomnia – for Jane Dougherty’s Sunday Strange

I am caught in the net of the witch queen, Insomnia,
Who spools up my sleep like a silken thread,
And all the courtiers who trail in alongside her.

Anxiety is the first of her daughters
She takes up her place at the head of the bed,
Where I lie in the net of the witch queen, Insomnia;

Anger and fear, two bedraggled camp followers,
Shadow Insomnia, mark where she treads,
And all the courtiers who trail in alongside her.

The moon shines too bright, take a cool sip of water,
Don’t fight it. Read something, a book, say, instead,
As you lie in the net of the witch queen Insomnia.

I take note of the breath of the night time wanderers,
And the unsteady beat of Insomnia’s tread,
And all the courtiers who trail in alongside her.

The moon rolls on its way, past the wakening stars,
Sleep slips away until night time has sped,
I am caught in the net of the witch queen, Insomnia,
And all the courtiers who trail in alongside her.

This is for Jane Dougherty’s Sunday Strange. She hasn’t revealed the artist yet – that’s a surprise for next week. I’ve chosen a villanelle, which is curious, because I’ve just been over there and looked at the pingbacks and there’s another villanelle in there. It’s not the most obvious form to pick, so I wonder if there’s something about the picture? Anyway, it’s worth popping over there and checking out the contributions. Night_by_Edward_Burne-Jones_(1870)