As ghostly as a graveyard In the murky depths of night, His eyes are like extinguished fires, Long gone the gift of light.

A tortured spirit screams inside, Though outwardly he’s numb: This tragedy of broken dreams And nightmares yet to come.

Bereft of love and self-respect, Forbidding and forlorn, He turns his anguish on himself And rues that he was born.

The poignancy is palpable Now hope and faith have gone. All progress is subverted here And just the clock ticks on.

He used to have self-confidence And practise self-control. The drive to thrive – not just survive – Once sparkled in his soul.

There was a time when self-esteem Stopped by and stayed a while, But that was in another world That withered with his smile.

The black clouds of despondency Cast anchor overhead, Now nothing seems worth anything And joie de vivre is dead.

Too fragile, oversensitive: Each failing keenly felt; He folded when he tried to play The hand that he was dealt.

Relationships disintegrated, Blessings turned to dust; His home and work life shattered, Leaving only self-disgust.

Mistakes were made: transgressions, fights; And he could not atone. The friends he had abandoned him So now he stands alone.

He stares at his reflection In the glass he can’t put down, Seeing nothing but subservience To sorrows he can’t drown.

His self-fulfilling prophecy, ‘I won’t amount to much’, Has paved his way to martyrdom With alcohol his crutch.

He smoulders in his darkness, Lost in self-destructive thoughts, And wards off caring questions With cold ready-made retorts.

This damaged goods, reduced-to-clear Pariah haunts the shelf Since nobody can help a man Who cannot help himself.

The chance for intervention Perished many moons ago, So now there’s just the maelstrom Then the underworld below.

The chaos of self-medicated Meltdown fills the void; A humble life worth living Has been wholly self-destroyed.

Copyright © Ross A Adamson. All Rights Reserved.