Esther J. Doucet


I listen to sad music to feel something.


I open the door in winter and stand there in next to nothing
to feel the Alaskan cold hold me,
choke me.
My nipples get hard.
It\'s the only time they do.
When was the last time someone made me feel good?


I don\'t sleep much but when I do
I dream of what it will be like
to see a smile in my day besides the one I force
in the mirror to check my teeth for broccoli that isn\'t there
and my hair for flyaways so I can look presentable
for no one.
For my own sanity.


I feel most like me when I am breathing hard
from running through a problem;
from running to you;
from solving others\' problems;
from running from you.


The quiet begs to differ, says
\"I\'ll swallow you whole;
I\'ll take your soul.
You are at peace when you are with me;
only in the quiet can you truly breath.\"


But all the meditation in the world can\'t challenge me enough.
That is my biggest challenge.


I listen to sad music to feel something.


It\'s like being in an abusive relationship;
abusing substances,
abusing yourself,
then pulling yourself out of all that shit
and realizing your reward is bittersweet -
an illusion,
that those days brought challenge to your life at the very least,
and at the best, the good numbed the pain,
the lessons learned like falling rain -
yet uncomfortably penetrating and necessary for growth.


I come alive in the heart of the storm,
but it was just another form of escape.


If the mountains that surround me could speak
they would tell me I am free.
Free to move as I please.
Free to live in war or peace.
Free to save the world
or die trying.
But not free to save me from me.
Their company is steadfast,
cool, calm indifference.


I dance to stay alive as the days drag by.


It\'s like being in a healthy relationship with yourself
then waking up one day wanting it all to go away.
But escapism isn\'t escape.
Wasting away isn\'t the way.
I am made for so much more.
From that fact stems my pain.


I hold these bars,

I grip them tight,

white knuckles in heartless moonlight;
twenty-hour winter nights,
my restlessness held inside.
My eyes stare
and i long for long nights that don\'t deafen me with quiet.


I listen to sad music to feel something

because the happy music gets old
as I get older
and realize the mountains don\'t actually hear me when I laugh,
don\'t actually feel me when I dance
across their silent forms
way up here in the Great White North.