The Room of My Life

This poem was inspired by Anne Sexton’s poem “The Room of My Life” and this is the first draft I wrote at six this morning.  The title will change.


Here, in the room of my life,

a cigarette is half burning, the gray ash

snake still in the crystal.  Cheap crystal.

Good Will crystal.

Painted black book shelves, yellowed paperbacks

with bent corners–The Bell Jar–like a pulse

on the second shelf.  Two copies.

There is wallpaper–striped gold with deep purple

paisley and forest greens.  I must have picked at it–

near the ceiling, strips are gone,

the delicate paper bowing backwards.  Pieces of it

have slipped down into the cold register.

There are one or two windows…the heavy drapes block out

all seasons but there is, shhh, one crack between the curtain panels

where brilliant light sneaks through.

I lay on the dusty chaise like Woolf in makeup

and I stare into the light

for hours–almost seeing nothing.

But once in awhile I might see, I think, a planet,

a beating red orb and then it’s gone.

Here, in the room of my life, there aren’t any

photographs, just sketches–pictures that aren’t even real.

No one.

Because maybe it hurts less then, here, in my room.

I take the closet doors off because I believe

in being honest with my selves.

There are no wheels–all things must drag and scream

so I know they’re there.

Cheap pens.

Loose sheets of paper.  Black knuckles from writing

words over and over and over in my journal

that my therapist is supposed to see:

I’m not here.

I’m not here.

I’m not here.



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