I take a drag.
I feel flimsy, like satin, like crinkly skin.
And I am sick of hearing bad news on internet links and TV.
I’m not ignoring that life is shit for some people.
And if I could remove the pain with a click of my tongue,
I’m just waiting for a story about how a raindrop slides down a shard of sweetgrass.
Or an article on how butterflies grow.
Or a psychology report on how the sound of children’s laughter heals.
Or how good a slice of chocolate cake tastes indoors by the fire on a rainy day.
I crack my bones under the stress,
I read the pages of deaths,
The animals disappearing like sweets,
And racism as real as the colour red.
I feel the heavy dry bones of bankers sweat under their millions,
And the hungry bellies of the poor rock and creak like shipwrecks
Thousands of leagues deep in the oceans.
I look through the ignorance like it were the front page of a magazine,
And I stare through the shine of gossip
As though tabloids were smacking my lips with naked-bitch cherry gloss.
I taste the murders and the dictators
Like the government stuffed my mouth with soil,
And I want to breathe but as I do
I’m inhaling the pollution of the clouds and the sky from a billion factories
Chugging away on giant cigarettes, guiding the industry like stars,
I’m suffocating on the ice caps and the polar bears dropping like daisies
And the rapes of defenceless men and women scattering the news like heroin injections
And poverty as black as tar
Money thrown away by the council by merging two great lanes into one unhelpful one…
I hear the screams, I know that Syria’s being hammered into the Earth’s core
To disappear like Atlantis,
We turn away the migrants we can’t keep because we’re already bulging,
When they’re fleeing from the outbreaks of wars we created,
And I breathe in the extinction and feel the cyanide of events course through my brain.
And I just really want to be inhaling birds singing,
And wedding bells, and “Good morning”
And snuggles in bed and lie-ins and children on swings
And trees shaking in soft breezes that brush my cheek like the soft fur
Of puppies licking my face
And creme brûlées cracking with teaspoons,
And rainfall on canals and presidents and prime ministers shaking hands
And hugging in public
And “thank you” and “allow me”
I should inhale star gazing and rose blooms and quiet whispers of snow fall
And flakes as cute as kisses
And reunion, celebration, champagne glasses clinking like a pair of blue eyes blinking,
But here I sit, 1 am and I’m flicking through this news feed and see Farah’s shared several depressing posts and raising awareness,
And I’m so aware that I’m tumbling into that dark hole of wanting to be ignorant.
I see Corin’s shared the breast cancer video,
Facebook’s trending news, another person has died, another shooting,
Another recession, Greece is losing out and the USA isn’t putting down its gun.
And the disease and the pain,
And the tears we all shed.
Sometimes I really want to just laugh. And not know about protruding ribs of babies and domestic abuse.
Sometimes I just want to cast a shadow over the bad stuff, forget its happening,
And watch the sunset with my loved ones with a bag of marshmallows in my hand.