Reality Check

  1. Ale Mercado illustration for Reality check poem by Aoibhin Young

White knuckles clutch my sheets as a silent sob leaves my open gob.
My body curls up as if I had been shot.
The silent hateful voices echo in my skull as I’m pushed into a familiar pit of self hatred.
Stop it. Stop it.
Stop it please.
End it now, make this crap go away.
Please, do something. Anything.
Stop it. Stop it. Stop it.
Stop.
Think of the reasons you’re still here.
Aoife, Ash, Mur, Aleena, Ciar.
Them.
Deep breaths liberate my lungs,
As I reluctantly sit up and turn to the edge of my bed.
One foot touches the floor
And the one step is all I need.

Note From Editor
This poem deals with really difficult emotions which many of us will experience at some stage, and its author does so with wisdom, grace and hope. The frank, no-holds-barred language in the poem creates an immediacy which is hard to look away from, and conveys a sense of ‘realness’ which is a rare thing in poetry. It’s an admirable piece of work, and one which will hopefully inspire others to take that first step out of despair.