The Ice

By , Danbury, CT
I close my eyes at 11 p.m., but sleep doesn’t come.
The pain in my head is everlasting, striking when I’m down.
I fall asleep an eternity later, praying for the first time that
when I wake up, it goes away.

I wake up with a crack in my head,
and I can almost see it in my mind.
A thin, feathery line split in the middle
by a small man with a sleek knife.
He precisely creates a fresh cut
down the same strip every morning.
In that wound, salt is placed.
Hurt travels through every little corner
of my body.
It’s in my fingertips.
It’s in the hollow space behind my ear.
It’s on my lip.
Everywhere. Everywhere. Everywhere.

I’m in pain throughout every second of the day,
but a façade is brought upon my face at school.
Lying on my bed after I come home, I try to concentrate
on my English homework,
however, my headache distracts me greatly.
It is these times that I put my
head down and weep.

Poor mom. She cries whenever she sees me.
Every two minutes she asks me if I’m better.
I smile and tell her that I am. How do I tell her I’m
struggling to merely turn my mouth up?

I have been tested for cancer, tumors, concussions,
aneurysms, Lyme disease, stress, and a whole boat of
God knows what.
The nurse ties an elastic band on the crease
of my arm.
This makes it easier to find the vein she has to
extract the blood from.
Needles are so close to me that they’re my best friends.
I hate needles.

Every day for the past two months was hard work.
I take ten tablets each day. 70 tablets per week.
Nausea, vomiting, and dizziness are side effects.
Doctors don’t care.

I have physical therapy sessions.
My therapist’s name is Lisa.
Once she gave me an hour of therapy.
I feel bad that she’s not able to help me.
I don’t tell her either.

I talk to my sister and ask,
“What have I done to deserve this?”
She tells me to shut up because
nothing happened to me.
Nothing at all.
She doesn’t know. Nothing
out of the ordinary has ever happened
to her.

I hear it whispering to me.
Mumbling stupid nothings, so low I cannot hear.
Does that make me a skitzo?
I don’t even know anymore.

I feel like a jerk, stealing away teachers’ attention
when they ask me how I am.
Maybe I should just stop talking.
My friends, they pity me, but they don’t understand.
They call me pessimistic, but hey, life’s a cynic.
There are people in the world with many more problems
than me, but here I am complaining about something so
miniscule.

I hardly wear my emotions on
my sleeve.
I take medication like an alcoholic drinks
his beer.
I conceal…conceal…conceal.
I guess this is normal in a life like this.





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