A  nightmare forest

Under pouring rain,

My body is awake and asleep.

The throbbing, the pounding

Of this frightened heart

preventing repose,

Upsetting the balance

of the otherwise disciplined,

Spinning bed and raging head,

The universe set to explode,

And still I’m still.

In the midst of this consumption,

the looming presence of

The Fear;

My muted screams unheard

Help me, please wake me,

Comfort me even with nightmares,

Save me from the in-between.

Already the rain and rotation subsides,

Now I’m blanketed in evanescent calm.


(Note: This poem is about sleep paralysis, which I’ve experienced a number of times. What happens is I’m in this almost-awake-but-not-quite state, and my bed starts to spin with this loud whirring sound. I try to move but I can’t, and when it happens, it’s always accompanied by this feeling of terror. I scream but no sound comes out. Sometimes, but not always, there will be a presence in the room, beside my bed. I can never make out what or who it is, I’m just aware that it’s there, and I’m scared of it, even though it doesn’t move or speak. Most of the time, I know exactly what’s happening, and that it’s all in my head and none of it is real. But it’s still always terrifying as shit when it happens.