Shadow Poetry

with me

who else lives daily with the feeling of defeat?
if your heart is heavy, come sit it at my feet.
I understand you, I know you all too well,
tell me when life broke you, how hard you fell.

you can find solace, here with me
I promise to truly hear you, to really see.
I know this world is ugly, believe you me
sometimes all we do is ache, exist, be.

you don’t have to smile for me, no pretending
I know how much energy you’re expending.
every day, just trying to smile, keep it all together
fearing a breakdown under the weight of one last feather.

but here it is quiet and here you are free
here you can lay your burden down with me.
we can sit safely together in the darkness of life
and you can spill all your secrets, your shame, your strife.

we’ll stare at the sky until something beautiful shines
even as our light, our fire, sputters and whines.
I know you have merit, sometimes you have joy
and I know this world treats your heart like a toy.

come sit with me, and take a moment to breathe
remove your mask, this fake, suffocating sleeve.
unzip your skin, for what we need is each other
so come with me this night so we can make it through another.

by Daphne Shadows

Shadow Poetry

vicious cycle

i keep fighting forward
and just when i think i’ve got my feet under me
i realize i’m on my knees
bloodied and hazy

can you create castles out of sand?
a masterpiece from oils and fine brushes?
a whole, walking, talking person
out of a broken, beaten, wraith?
– only to have a sledgehammer taken to it?

again
and again
and again

do you choose to stand, crawl, scream
rage against the silence
chip away at the race you cannot win
and keep kind against the cruelty?

only to end up back here again
dazed
wondering who cried the tears on your cheeks
or left the spire of rage in your chest?
who took the wind from your sails
the breath from your lungs?
left your hands mere shards of bone
with your lips sewn shut?

i get tired of this place
i know you’ve been here too
how can we all feel so alone
when we tread the same footsteps
until the ground is more worn than our spirits

is this it?
an endless loop

a trudging march to the beat of whatever drum happens to hold our reins
a constant gasping above the surface
before we fight not to drown once more

i choose to believe it’s not so
even though…

Shadow Poetry

Deja Vu

I got in a fight

And broke my own nose

Could be nicer, I suppose


The mirror shattered

I woke up on the other side

Left my bloodied wings behind


Because I know

There’s mold behind the dry wall

Never capitulate when I fall


The decay keeps hiding

But I can smell it out

I don’t know what this is about


Pieces of glass in my way

I think I found your secret

Don’t know if I can keep it


You’re not who I thought

This reflection’s getting murky

I keep forgetting it’s me


I got in a fight

And broke my own hold

The duality never gets old


by Daphne Shadows

Shadow Poetry

My Lips on Your Lungs

There isn’t black black-enough to cross it out.

Sitting like a king on the horns of doubt.

Does anybody know what I’m talking about?

 

If I set fire to the moon, would you notice?

Could I sacrifice my pain to see truth, to know this?

Misery is the only home I’ve had but it’s one I wouldn’t miss.

 

It’s a little crazy, isn’t it?

Grinning to ensure you fit.

It burns, doesn’t it?

 

Almost like the world wants us to live. But it doesn’t.

Realizing I’ve walked in the skin of someone I wasn’t.

Until I became you to stay away from what I mustn’t.

 

Mustn’t, little miss.

Good girls and boys all know this.

 

Mustn’t be a mess

Pretend you have no stress

Got society to impress

They might ask you to undress

Must always answer yes

And speak a little less

Win this game of chess

Ignore your heart’s abscess

Yes – you can breathe, I guess

(Just not in excess)

Climb to my your success

Must make everyone obsess.

 

I tired your way, discovered something –

I don’t want this life and I’m fighting.

Everyone ready? You might need better lighting.

 

I’ll undress alright, unzip my skin,

Drop it on the floor and let the horror settle in.

Pull up a chair, take a seat, I’m about to begin.

 

I’m a mess, I confess, no doubt about that.

Can’t just pull mental health out of a hat.

And something’s making it worse, let’s talk about that…

 

You want who I am to be the mask you used to see,

But that’s just not me and I’d rather be free.

Instead, I’ve started stepping into me.

 

You’re angry but that’s okay, I expected the worst.

But this shabby glass bubble, I’m going to shoot, it’s going to burst.

I need some space. My soul needs to be nursed.

Sometimes all this compassion makes me feel cursed.

I’m drowning in pain ‘cuz I never put myself first.

I wish all these wasted years could be reimbursed.

When I speak up now, it has to be rehearsed.

Feeling so spineless? Let me tell you, it’s the worst.

 

Have to climb a mountain just to open my mouth.

Always afraid the situation’s going to go south.

 

Then there’s this other part of me that wants everything to burn.

‘Cuz maybe if they hurt too, they’ll have to learn.

With their pretty plastic melting, with nowhere to turn,

Maybe they’ll remember some respect, some human concern.

 

If I’m honest though, sometimes I just want them to hurt.

Yeah, I know, it’s childish. I’m trying to divert.

No, I won’t smile and no, I won’t revert.

I’m thinking it’s time to draw some lines and assert.

 

Let me just slide it down like lace,

I won’t force but you’ll embrace

Or I’ll leave, erase every trace.

I’m using my own two feet if I’m running this race.

You can’t have my voice or my face.

Won’t sell my soul, get off my case.

Think I’ll eat it? You’re off base.

 

Won’t take it for the crowd or sit like a lady,

Won’t wait politely in line for a bowl of misery.

Think you can stop me? Then you never knew me.

 

Sewing my own skin now and it’s Mizz not missy.

You want into my life? Show me!

Think I should go back to pretending? Try me.

Think I’m too messy? I’m so not sorry.

Think I’m too open? Don’t follow me.

 

Throwing husks into the fire so I can see inside myself.

Taking all these voices off the shelf.

Going to work. Shattered mind won’t fix itself.

Watch me stitch them together into one self.

 

Double sided, bipolar, multiple personality,

Jekyll and Hyde. Yes baby, that’s me.

Normal to be more than one thing, you hear me?

 

Not enough whiteout to cover me up now.

You could probably extinguish me, but I’m not sure how.

Kill me but changing me’s not something I’ll allow.

Killing butterflies and making dignity bow –

That’s not for me, I’ll stop you somehow.

Bottom line is, you won’t have any part of me, I disavow.

 

Silly shadow eater, you thought I was done?

I’ve got my ribs to crack open and wars to have won,

Barbed wire to come open, velvet to slide on,

I’ve got my boots to lace up, some hearts to shake, hon.

Walls to break until your fears come undone,

I’ve got heavy nights to bleed through to meet the sun.

Oops – that’s not what you meant by some edible fun?

My lipstick on your lungs, I’ve got a reckoning to run.

 

By Daphne Shadows

 

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