All around me spoken fragments whirl,
Buffeting the flimsy mental walls.
Carrying no message they unfurl
Deep within; train of thought soon stalls.
Ears pick up promiscuous exchange
From people ignorant they impinge
Glaringly upon me. Senses range
High and low: seek peace else I unhinge.
Inundated by the flow of words
Juxtaposed in time, the threads entwined,
Knot in writhing tangles. What was heard’s
Lost in noise, just too much for my mind.
Managing to block out this refrain
Needs more effort than I can sustain.
On a rocky lee shore, run aground,
Pounded by the stormy wind and rain,
Quivering. Safe harbour must be found:
Rest before I’m broken yet again.
Suffering exhaustion, mental blocks
That I once relied on start to crack
Under such a strain. The hammer cocks,
Verging on an act with no way back.
Withdraw! Retreat! Overload ahoy!
Xanthic streak preserves my precious skin.
Yellow-bellied, frightened little boy,
Zombie-like, lights on but no-one in.