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Key Number 63/Stars and Bars

The grounds man walked up to the gate
And pulled out his Yale key numbered 63:
This day had been long in coming;
The end of a hard era of taut history.

A lost soul in Charleston
Killed nine in Mother Emanuel.
Whither go our children:
Do you seek Heaven or Hell?

The gate swung open and let in the man
Who reached up for the halyard,
And down furled came the Stars and Bars—
A breeze ripening out of the Southward.

94 thousand died under that proud banner
For their State, their God and sweet country fair—
But fairly beaten, fairly lost
With blasted angels, a long gray line climbed that tall stair.

A lost soul in Charleston
Killed nine in Mother Emanuel.
Whither go our children:
Do they seek Heaven or Hell?

The legislature cast their ballots
On the sure fait accompli
As would’ve been that final warrant
Signed by Abe Lincoln or by Marse Lee

The grounds man folded the crimson rag
Headed for a place of Honoured History;
Now wrongly tainted by hate and sorrow,
The cure a socio-psychological mystery.

A lost soul in Charleston
Killed nine in Mother Emanuel.
Whither go our children:
Do we teach Heaven or Hell?

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Five?

One glass gone
And my poetry’s weak
Two glass gone
It’s been a week
Three glass gone
I cannot speak
Another glass gone
Am I a freak?
I prefer a little Taylor
With my poignant Lennon
When you party
Who do you lean on?
Nope, no girlfriend
And, so I wine
Naw, no reason
[Put the stereo on ten] let’s all rock on!
One glass gone
Let’s radiate
Two glass gone
Obfusticate
Three glass gone
Prevaricate
Four glass gone
Hey, You, wait!
Who’d have guessed?
If I was depressed
We work in hospice
We’re all a bit stressed
But Sarah then flies free
We all applaud
Is it Summer all ready?
Oh, Lawd, Lawd, Lawd…
One glass gone
And my poetry’s freak
Two glass gone
Hide and seek
Three glass gone
I cannot speak
Another glass gone
I shouldn’t speak…

Crosstown

I fell in a hole inside myself*
But I’m looking for the way out.
Here I stand next to you,
Why can’t you hear me shout?
“Hug me! Help me! Like me!”
“Why am I still here?!”
[After all this gnawing time,
Shouldn’t things be more clear?]
Trauma is an overwhelming negative event*
Frozen up in your deep insides*—
Tears are the trauma as it melts,*
Getting better in slips and slides.
I found myself outside my hole
I’m sorry for all the fuss,
But, thanks for just being there
And getting me back on Life’s Crosstown Bus.

* Lines paraphrased from On living with depression and suicidal feelings | Sami Moukaddem | TEDxLAU

Andreas andreas

Andreas andreas
All those marathon training miles:
Was it all only pain;
Didn’t you see any approving smiles?

Germanwing germanwing
Dashed down from the sky.
All the aghast readers
Cannot cope with the why.

depression DEpression
Is totally breathlessly for real,
But to flee the nameless dragon
And take 150 lives to steal.

Andreas andreas
We may never hear the call—
The desperately silently sad
Alone crushed by life’s pall.

1 (800) 273-8255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline