Voices Carry

Voices Carry

The sun and moon
do not shine
for me.
No time
for me.
The clock keeps ticking...
My Sanity.

Tick. Tock.
Tick. Tock.

Flickering incandescence
The cold light of history.
Through Mortality.

Belts and braces
Bars and bells
Under Lock and Key.
Hear me.

In Solitary
Nothing prevails.

I scream.
To hear

And Voices carry.

A sound
I cannot see
Another voice,
of Misery.
Floats softly back to me.

Do I knock it back?
Push it down?
Brave the day
Without a sound?

The pain
In my head.
The distant cries of a stranger
Words unsaid...
My only company.

And my clock...

Tick. Tock.
Tick. Tock.

The walls
Of Doubt
A private cell.
My private Hell.

I fight to remember
I fight to forget
My life is not over.
The war not won...

Another hour
Another day
Time sweeps them all away.

The marks on my wrists
The barbs on my face
A lifetime of scars
These things...
can't be replaced.

I ask myself...

Why am I here?
What is my crime?
Why do I fear...
Doing this time?

I won't give up.
I've lived in sin.
My faith is strong
I let Him in.

I cry out loud.
What did I do wrong
To earn this...

Isolation song?

And voices carry...

This poem has been written in response to Blockchainpoet's weekly prompt: isolation. I wanted to try to give a sense of the feeling of desperation and how it impacts on the mental health of a prisoner enduring a spell in solitary confinement, doing everything they can to survive the experience, whilst it slowly tears them apart.

It seemed like the most hopeless and awful position to be in... I read a couple of articles about solitary confinement and, in particular, Florida's terrible record for having way too high a percentage of their prison population in solitary at any one time... and using solitary cells simply because of prison space issues and because it is easier to hide the problems of ill-discipline away than to deal with them and rehabilitate properly. So many people end up in isolation for periods far longer than mandated or allowed by statute... but there is no justice for this kind of thing. (I have added this in from a comment I made below as I felt it helps to explain my thinking at the time of writing which i probably should have done from the start).

Edit: The point has been raised that the experience is not so much unlike the experience of living through and with depression. Now, I don't live with depression myself, but I have experienced depression in my life. I had the joy of being placed in a medical state of depression for a few minutes by a specialist who was running tests to check my body's response to shock. Long story! Anyway... I was injected with adrenaline to see what my body would do and it responded apparently as expected... but I started sobbing my heart out. I felt the most incredible sadness come over me like a dark cloud. It consumed me: my thoughts, my feelings, my everything. I couldn't process past the singular sense of despair and futility, hopelessness and helplessness, and the most immense sadness I have ever felt. My mom asked me why I was crying... and my answer... I don't know... I just feel so incredibly sad and miserable. The doctor apologised to me, informing me that he had caused the state of temporary depression and that he would give me another injection which would neutralise the first and make everything better. He did. And it did. If only it were that easy in real life. If only there was a quick fix for the torturous hells that so many have to endure.

For things like depression, we can take a pill, work on our lifestyle, and improve our habits, and our mental health. For all else, and some may argue for depression too we can turn to Faith to guide us through the darkest hours.

Header image Confinement by Lindsay_imagery in Canva pro

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