Verses about beauty, madness, despair and suicide (written during severe depressions).


Copyright 2012, S Hartwell

Sometimes the struggle seems too much,
Sometimes I feel I'm losing touch,
I've never known the real me,
There must be some way to be free.

Somewhere my mind went very wrong,
And I have lived like this too long,
Inside is just an empty place,
A screaming dark that's hard to face.

But now, there's silence in my brain,
I question if I can be sane;
My life unlived, I just exist,
Upon the edge of an abyss.

So ... what now? Already mad?
And squandered the one life I had?
What keeps me here? It's hard to know,
Perhaps it's time for letting go ...

Copyright 2012, S Hartwell

Fierce dragons and fey unicorns
The margins of my logs adorned,
But now they're gone.
Reptiles waddled round the words,
Intertwined with mythic birds,
But they have flown.
And faces fair with flowing hair,
No longer are they doodled there,
But margins now are blank and bare,
Of mental overflow.

Horses galloped 'cross the lines,
Leaves and flowers grew and twined,
But grow no more.
The flowers that grew in inky riot,
Have gone, now that my mind is quiet,
Of that I'm sure.
The gods and faeries, fauns and elves,
Were born of ills in mental health,
Symptoms of my unquiet selves;
My inner war.

Instead of doodles, rank on rank,
The edges of the page are blank,
And now I find
My pen at rest, its ink not showing
The products of the overflowing
Of a mad mind.
Where once my ballpoint danced and bled
Released the pressure in my head,
I've found a peaceful place instead
And can unwind.

Copyright 1985, S Hartwell

At least she has her beauty,
That we may understand her madness,
Tragic in her glory,
And glorious in her sadness.

Understand her desolation,
As an error of her being,
While her soul seeks compensation,
In the glory we are seeing.

The salvation she is yearning,
Is tempered with despair,
While the power we see burning,
Has a lost and lonely air.

We see before us beauty,
A veneer for inner sadness,
And hold it up for admiration,
Ignoring beautyís madness.

At least she has her vanity,
We call it her conceit,
And notice not insanity,
In vanityís deceit.

And of course she has her beauty,
A mask for her despair,
But we never look behind it,
To see whatís REALLY there.

Copyright 1990, S Hartwell

To sleep, perchance to dream,
And then what dark visions stir my soul,
What night-born terrors draw my screams;
Half-seen omens in sleep-perverted scenes?

To bed, mayhap to sleep,
And hope that sleep will make me whole,
That it will heal, not tear asunder,
The curtain of my sanity;
But what dark visions my company keep,
What black dreams do rend my soul!

And when sleep does not the torn mind heal,
When deep nightmares their face reveal,
What then? And what of I -
Who cannot forgo sleep, but if I sleep may die?

Copyright 1981, S Hartwell

Tomorrow he will paint on his smile,
And go into the sawdust ring,
And under all the make-up,
Of big eyes and painted grin,
And silly baggy trousers, wig and nose,
No-one sees the loneliness within,
And no-one knows.

Underneath the greasepaint and the stagelights,
A comedian tells jokes,
To little laughing children,
And ordinary folks,
No-one sees the smile is practised there,
To mask the lonelines of fame,
The sadness and despair.

Tomorrow I will paint my smile,
In lipstick bright and gay,
And go out into the cold world,
To face another day,
But underneath my make-up no-one sees,
The silent, lonely, brooding self,
The lonely real me.

Tomorrow I will paint my face,
To smile like any clown,
And underneath the practised grin,
No-one sees when I am down,
I tell jokes to bridge the widening space,
Between their world and mine,
And in my pocket mirror I see someone elses face.

A world where I have no painted smile,
Is more than I can bear,
They look and do not recognise,
The gaunt face of despair,
They know only my painted shell,
Not the insecurity within,
Or emotions I have hidden well.


We mouthed words at each other,
The not-really-you
Addressing the false me
Under the tattered banner
Of an October sky.

We spoke, but our minds never
Once met.

Copyright 1982, S Hartwell

I can hear the laughing voices,
Through the thickness of my skin,
I can hear them talk - but faintly,
For the silence closes in.

I can see their happy faces,
Through the windows of my eyes,
Darkness shutters my senses
To the laughter and the lies.

The voices slowly fading,
As the silence grows so loud,
Whenever I looked to you for help
There was darkness all around.

Far away I hear you talking,
I close the entrance to my mind,
And my thoughts fly to another place,
Leaving this one far behind.

Copyright 1982, S Hartwell

 "Hello darkness my old friend,
Iím coming back to you again",
Comfort and security,
All these things youíve given me.

I would sacrifice my sight,
For your everlasting night;
For the womb-warm dark of death,
Exchange my lonely life and breath.

In your darkness ever-sleeping,
No more laughing, no more weeping,
"Welcome darkness my old friend,
Youíre coming back to me again".

Copyright 1989, Sarah Hartwell

I took you into my body
I took you into my mind
You assuaged yourself on the fruit of my flesh
And left my love behind.

You did not rape my body
For that I freely gave
But you raped my trust, abused my love,
Left nothing there to save.

You plucked the fruit of youth
From the tree of my innocence,
And sated yourself with passionís excess
At naiveteís expense.

Copyright 1989, Sarah Hartwell

I asked you for the world
And you gave me the stars,
I only wanted your body
But you gave me your heart.
You mortgaged your body,
You ransomed your soul,
For the love I wonít give you,
Love I donít want to know.

You paid the piper,
But Iíll choose the tune,
Iíve danced with the devil -
What more can I lose?
So donít come here crawling,
I didnít ask for your heart,
I only wanted the world,
Not the sun and the stars.

Copyright 1989, Sarah Hartwell

Amaranth, the flower that never dies,
Is incarnadine, the colour of my heart,
We called our love the love that never lies
What colour is the stain that now keeps us apart?

Love lies bleeding for the better days
When hand in hand we faced the world head on,
When together under satin sheets we lay,
Faced horizons and could see beyond.

Now our noses press against the silent glass
That stands like ice between our souls,
We stare in longing but our love has passed
As we pursued our different goals.


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