The Unwelcome Stranger That Shares My Bed

I am never alone at night
a stranger shares my every waking hour;
a cold companion in the endless darkness.
Once my friend, it now
mocks me as I contemplate
a futile existence;
my senseless struggle
with consciousness itself.

Yes, the stranger tempts and teases.
as I am about to enter those outstretched arms
siren like enticing me into their numbing
a semi-rainbow of terror foreshadows a shower of bitter tears.
Red blood staining orange
Yellow teeth gaping through yawning chasms.
Blue eyes lost in silent fear,
whites stained with incomprehension
staring sightless, spectre like before me.

These images of eyes transfixed in abject terror
are no stranger.
Grief etched vividly across tear-stained faces
staring into my inner soul.

I close my eyes only to see a world
torn by conflict
A people betrayed and abandoned
like the worthless children’s dolls carelessly scattered
on the ground.

I see a shell of a city.
Solid structure reduced to dust
mimicking the dreams of the lives
once vibrant within
those walls.

A child’s toy lies abandoned amidst blood stained rubble.

An end to the constant suffering
of forgotten people?

Our gift instead was repackaged pain.
Same suffering
Different source.
A variation on a theme.

Just how does the power of evil
Snuff out the light? The hollow sound of silent pain
erase the sound of laughter that was heard

Lying next to me in the darkness
the stranger who was my friend
will not join me.

Instead he teases,
plays with my senses as
my eyes droop
my mind drifts.
Soothing sleep looms large.

he abandons me at the moment of bliss.
Another sleepless night looms
as visions from Dante
again occupy
a consciousness imprinted deep with images
of despair.

-- Georges de Bernard, 2006