Monthly Archives: October 2016

Black Fireworks

Dear readers,

Another poem. Hope you enjoy.

Black Fireworks

Pumping heart and out of breath. Silent darkness foghorns such lucid fears.

Every life fuck up weeds through joys, sucking it and dismantling it from thoughts.

Left like a broken skittle in the wake of a loathing locomotive passing through.

Foes’ faces kidnap and smother my slumber; tomorrow’s barrel is loaded with threat.

Pills, potions and therapy; kick in or fuck off, along with God’s false hopes in intense prayers.

Demons have taken His place, sultrily enticing me to believe what’s already slapped upon my stares.

He whispers it. He breathes it. He screams it. Like a black firework, etched as a display in the night’s tepid air.

Caressing words. So natural. Desirable. Easy coming. To abide by. Give in. You want to.

Dropping. Like a sin. Almost sweetly to defeat. More relieving than a release of tears.

The faces. They would lose their power. The scars though. They last for years.

Like this. A numb trauma. Shifts nerves. Distortion.


That moment before you sleep . . .

Dear readers,

Here’s another little poem for my beloved.

That moment before you sleep…

Work has been forgotten,

And worries have sailed away,

My body imprints itself in the mattress,

At the end of a manic day.

The TV is off,

The fan disperses stale heat,

I look into your eyes,

And there our smiles meet.

Carressed by your loving words,

A pill of joy, I’m addicted,

The only light coming from the lamp.

But it’s from you I feel ignited.

My Goddess in many ways,

Although you prefer I call you princess,

A majesty to whom I’m soverign,

Bringing peace in times of unrest.

I can feel it creeping,

Slumber invading my mind,

I wait for these moments all day,

My muse, my soul, my shrine.

My eyes are slowly waving and shutting,

The last thing I see is your face,

I feel it, that second,

That everything is going to be fine.


Sweetness is Night Silence

Dear readers,

Something I wrote last night.

Sweetness is Night Silence

In the sweetness of the night silence,

One feels a swelling calm in the roar of darkness,

After the shushes and lullabies of mothers soften,

And drunkards disperse bars after spewing their sorrows to other drunkards,

You’re left with brushes of fresh breezes as a soulmate to your solitude.

You care not for any toxin in a glass,

Nor take responsibility for the day’s stupidities,

As those thoughts raid minds like a drunk mocks a sensitive sober gentleman.

Tonight the cool air and galaxies of stars I am,

Hovering in the sky waiting to glide down to slumber,

Observing with a tranquil smile as the city’s creatures rest in sweetness of the night of silence,

A guardian; I am a watchman of the world, a weapon of peace.



Bubu

Dear readers,

I suppose the upside to insomnia and anxiety is that the hormones trigger off all sorts of creative stimulus which is quite useful to writers. I wrote this poem after a panic attack at 3am yesterday when I was thinking of my poor wife who has to try and sleep through my tossing and turning.

The story behind this blog entry’s title is that my wife calls me by this charming name. It sometimes makes me feel like I’m her pet monkey, but it’s more amusing when she somehow manages to shorten Bubu to “Boobs”, which she does in public and ends up getting strange looks.

It’s a not epic, but it does remind us to appreciate those little moments together, even when we’re going through our personal issues.

Una poema pa’ ti

I know there are days when you want to kill me,

But there are more moments mounted in glee,

You put a smile on my face when there is a frown,

Your embrace rises a joy when I am down.

I wouldn’t know what to do if you weren’t here,

The thought alone brings a tear.

I want you to know I always appreciate you,

And I am here if you need me, your bubu.

(Except when I accidentally lock you out!)


The Anxiety Jolt

Dear readers,

It’s almost 5am and I was jolted awake by a nightmare a couple of hours ago that my students were hanging off a cliff. I’m not pleading for a psychological analysis of the dream. That I can work out easily by myself.

Remedies; there are aplenty, apparently, and I have tried the following:

  • Moving away from the bedroom when I wake up at some un-Godly hour to do work or read or write or listen to mindfulness recordings. I shouldn’t really be using electronic devices, and I should launch the TV out of the window (it’s stationed in the bedroom), but for the next two resources, they are needed.
  • Mindfulness apps, but I found myself analyzing my thoughts and anxieties even more, therefore worrying more. Many recordings say, “Just observe the thought.” However, my subconscious mind finds it hard to separate the words observe and think more about it
  • Positive affirmations, which I like to an extent, apart from the cheesy background music. Sometimes my mind takes it on board, although listening to affirmations telling me I’m brilliant at 3am after an hour’s sleep is a bit unrealistic and irritating. However, it’s important to batter down the negative spiral, and positivity is good for leadership in the classroom. If anyone knows of any good positive affirmation websites, let me know.
  • Stop beating myself up; not easy when you’re new to teaching. You’re mind magnifies mistakes. I’m learning my mother’s mantra of being good enough, while embarking on my sister’s philosophy of taking it all with a pinch of salt and a sense of humour.
  • Giving up caffine wasn’t that hard to do. Caffine-free tea is a nice replacement.
  • Giving up alcohol has been a bit harder at gatherings, and they can mix rather fatally I have read with sleeping or anxiety reducing pills. A nice whiskey can send you to sleep, but it doesn’t keep you in slumberland.
  • A worry notebook, although this makes me worry more, a bit like mindfulness. 
  • Benzos; I have been warned about them. They reduce stress, but they lose their effect after a while and they’re highly addictive. I had a fine sleep when my wife gave me one a couple of weeks ago. Since trying to come off, I have had rebound anxiety and this has got messy. This is where a doctor comes in, who I will see next week.
  • Melatonin; a verbal tablet that seems a bit lost on me at the moment. It is supposed to re-establish a more normal body clock. I’m not sure of the medical mechanics behind it, but they have been useful in the past.
  • Thyroid test; I was born without one, or an inactive one. When the brain needs more chemicals than the levothyroxine produces, we have an issue.
  • Meals; my appetite is dead with my stomach in knots. I’ve lost a lot of weight which makes me look healthier. Note the word look, because I certainly don’t feel it. I try to eat, but the nerves say no. This is dangerous, especially in an active job like teaching.
  • Introducing a go-to-bed hour, although my mind has no problems dropping off. It’s the waking up at the witch’s hour I have a problem with. The other night I fell asleep with my clothes on and double locked the front door from the inside preventing my wife from entering when she finished late from work. Alone in a Tegucigalpan street at 10:30pm isn’t a great place to be. Luckily her parents live close by. I jolted awake at 1:30am wondering where my wife was, only to see a load of missed calls and unhappy text messages on my phone. Good morning, guilt. Cue grovelling. Jokes about me accidentally on purpose ignoring her calls have been made, but I’m more grateful that nothing happened to her. 
  • Exercise; running is great, but I must admit, thinking about doing anything else other than class plans gives me panic. I need a worry hour, I know. But this is much easier said than done. 

Suffering these jolts or anxiety attacks aren’t nice, suffice to say. You want a instant relief so you can feel human again and function more effectively the next day.

It terms of the anxiety jolt, I have written a poem.

The Jolt

They’re in the HOUSE,

BANG.

They’re looking at you.

Eyes open. Sighing on my side. Facing the window. Yes, AWAKE. BANG.

The class plans.

Light on the phone. Says it’s 2am. FUCK. Dark outside. Rain. The poor people in the rain. Think of them.

The back talk; no class management.

Wife asleep. Lonely with manic husband. Disappointment sets in. Then comes frustration…

The smiles, the noun verbs, the low grades.

So, Mind. We had a deal. I was sleeping tonight. What happened there?

The voices go. Faces disappear. To see them again, A FEW HOURS LATER.

Why do it; this jolting and prodding and goading? Let me sleep.

No.

Let me be.

Ha! YEAH, just try it.

And I can’t. Another prayer to God. “Why am I forsaken?”

Take your book.

“Why are you doing this?”

Take your pen.

“Why me?”

Cry silently to the cold air.

“WHY?”

And think, think, think.

Do you suffer from anxiety? Have you any remedies you would like to share? Let me know what you think of the poem.


Notion of love

Dear readers,

Just a short poem on the notions of love.

Love

So curious are these notions of love;

Metaphors of liberty in the wings of a dove;

The possibility of God’s meddling or cherubs from above;

Or chemical reactions in labs; archives of experiments to think-of.

Where philosophers, artists and scientists meet

Is at the conclusion that love’s joy and pain intermingle at life’s seat,

But whether other animals feel it or it’s just a human feat;

A fantasy we have, as idealistic as a villa in the landscapes of Crete.

Some believe it’s the sanctity and legal binding of marriage,

While others go hand-in-hand just riding life’s carriage,

Fuck buddies maybe, stalking the edge of a sexual ridge,

Or blossoming from adversity; a death, an indelible pain, a miscarriage.

First dates with chest pains, vomiting, and nervous farts,

We’ve all given those gifts, pinkly red cards in the shape of a heart,

We like to think ’til death do we part’,

Though so often it’s piercing infidelity, trust ending swiftly like a dart.

Love at first sight or realisation over time are both true,

Just as poetic musings of love are nothing new,

Some are sceptic while others share my view

That we’re all a bit dumbfounded; we ain’t got a clue.

So yes, these perceptions don’t even whiff the iceberg’s tip,

And onwards we tread water; in the sea of love we dip.


Anxiety of a teacher

​Dear readers,

X amount of people around the world suffer from it. Many of them teachers. Teacher. Teaching. My new job. It keeps finding me.

I am teaching again in high school and learning just how difficult, as well as rewarding, the profession can be. I am from a family of teachers; both my parents were, as well uncles and aunts. Romantically speaking, it’s in my veins. However, I distinctly remember my sister and I one dinner time during our teenage years poking snide fun in the direction of my mother about how undeservedly long holidays teachers have. These remarks, without wanting to sound clichéd, really are coming back to haunt me. I’m currently visualizing my mother’s “told you so” expression. Furthermore, remembering my own teenage brattish attitudes towards teachers back at Hall Green School make me feel that there’s a huge cloud of karma hanging over me.

No matter what they say, teaching is a 7 day a week profession. In your first year, it eats you up. And from what I’ve read, it’s not just the first year. Planning, grading, studying class management strategies, handling parents and administration swallow the bulk of the time, and I am still at the stage of taking three hours of obsessing over a plan for a class that will only take an hour. Weekends and evenings with your loved ones disappear leaving you with a sense of guilt, and the panic over whether your students like/respect you, how to cram a lot of information into what feels your tiny head and delivering it in a motivating way in front of 30 judging eyes, consumes your thoughts and sleep. “Am I being too rigid or too soft?” Someone give me an answer to this balancing act! I have been told to be myself. Is that really wise for a loose-mouthed brummie? You regret things you said or activities you prepared and self-doubt rears its ugly head to jump on your head, no matter how much mindfulness and breathing activities you try. 

You might think that I am torturing myself somewhat; my wife frequently tells me so. It’s a learning experience, and buggering up and failure are part of the process. I know this, and I have been telling myself positive thoughts, listening to Marisa Peer‘s YouTube videos about how to manage self-talk to bring success to your life, and trying to find time to exercise. However, when anxiety comes knocking, it blows your routine apart and turns you into a person you don’t particularly like. I now fully appreciate the role of a teacher.

This time though, it’s for keeps. I am at a very good teaching establishment in Tegucigalpa and I am very grateful for the opportunity. Teaching has found me. I do enjoy it; I almost cried the other day when I found “Mr. Rogers rocks” written on the white-board. I am fed up of floating from job to job and profession to profession, being made redundant and wondering what the next avenue of my life will take. There comes a point where one just needs to smile and stick at it. I know I’m not a bad teacher because I put the hours in, I care about my students and I want them to progress. Of course, there is far more to teaching than that, and this I am learning. Along with prostitution and slavery, teaching is one of the oldest professions I suppose. Suffice to say, I am glad to have not picked the former vocations.

I am now understanding the meaning of “fake it to make it”. I criticized the statement on this blog a couple of years ago. I’m now learning it was a very good piece of advice. Even if you don’t feel like it, just tell yourself you’re the best and work very hard to correct your flaws. I am the best.

Now for a little poem: inspired by an anxiety attack at 3am this morning. It’s free verse. I hope you identify with it on some level. Enjoy.

Anxiety

Why, Anxiety?

Why do you exist?

What do you want from me;

My balls tight in your fist?

Why the student’s faces?

Why the vivid sounds?

Why wake me at 3am?

All day tomorrow; head in the clouds.

Why tell me now

That I have to be more organised,

That students see through me,

And my flaws aren’t disguised?

A little prayer before bedtime,

The magic of a little white pill,

Breathing in and out deeply,

The whisky bottle; a little swill,

Yet the fan spins too loud,

And I’m coated in greasy sweat from heat,

I can almost hear my food digesting,

There are no cures that Señor Anxiety can’t beat.

So why do you do it, Anxiety?

Why make me toss and turn?

Why wake my poor wife while you’re at it?

Why insist on making me burn?

Whether you’re disguised as my demons,

Or more realistically a figment of my imagination,

Please just let me be.

You’re job is done, I am fucked,

Now give me dreams of glee.