Photo by Diane Landro

Written by Ali Sutherland

Amnesiac,
Aphrodisiac,
Insomniac.
It all sounded so romantic and mysterious.
A disease of writers too impassioned by their words,
Kept up at night by sporadic inspiration that would spur them from their sheets
Like evidence of angst and rumination or reflection.
But her insomnia was no enigmatic act, there was no gain from listless nights awake.

The rhythm of the world operates on cycles of night and day.
But the insomniac exists between the cracks,
Dreaming up the company she lacks,
Laying in almost-rigomortis on her back.
Amongst light and dark, dawn and dusk,
the insomniac occupies the grey left in between;
She operates on scales and spectrums,
Never quite slipping into darkness, never burning white.
She pours it in the dark, please don’t turn on the light!
In shadows the liquid can sweetly trickle down her throat,
Remnants linger nonetheless: inklings of the fight
Daylight The Nyquil pools like blood stains,
Faster now the moon wanes,
It numbs the pain.
Pulling at the edges, straightening out her sheets,
They don’t feel so crisp and clean now,
just fuzzy like the sharp edges dulled to curb corners and the blades
worn down to butter knives.

The morning comes so she shakes up, the mirror points at the circles
she’s got to cover up, just put on some make up! just wake up!
But the waking up is the easy part, don’t set the alarm she doesn’t need it.
Play the metronome instead,
Let the notes sound in her head,
And when they can no longer rouse her from her bed,
breathe easy; SLEEP IS FOR THE DEAD.