work. > poetry.

From the Journals of Madness

Suddenly, one day
hit me like truck
hit me like out of control
like poison hit me
like growing
hit me like inside

*

Mum slept
an axe
under her pillow

*

The patient had smears for lips, hair gnarled at the roots.
Blue eyeliner, icing on a cupcake.

*

The Australians have a saying: “Be happy at all costs.”

My father has a saying: “Don’t cry or I’ll keep you in here longer.”

Once, I had an overdose. Da took me to the psychiatric ward.
Believing there was nothing wrong with me.
Believing I should be punished for an overdose.

They let me out when I started wearing lipstick again.

*

I will not subject myself to the unknown, she said. I will not allow you to electrocute my brain. She tugs at her earlobe. Her lipstick line smears a little. A dozen hatch marks frame her mouth. Like a map. Like topography. Her earrings dangle on a tight rope wire. A fishing line. I will not subject myself to the unknown, she says again, staring all day at a record spinning round.