Help Me, Sleep

Sweet, warm dark of night
pull me in and hold me tight.
Help me fight this awful scourge
of sleeplessness, and the urge
to give up, get out bed,
to live the life of one Dead.

My mind and mouth are disconnected
as is my soul, it seems infected
with some loopy, crazened curse
from which I cannot wrangle verse
of any meaning or consequence,
much less poetic 'brilliance'...

Sing-song, sing-song - that manic rhythm
drives my brain, my hand, my very innards.
In fact, this morning I awoke
with these first lines like a choke-
hold on my mind - after just four hours
of nothing like sleep, too weak to shower.

At least I rested, this much is true;
my eyes no more bear reddish hue.
Still, I'm not sure which foot is right
and which is wrong, if it's day or if it's night.
Did I just put the cat in the sink -
the dishes out the door, I think?

(But I don't own a cat, so how -?
No, I won't worry about that now...)

My life's a shambles, the house in ruins,
I cannot count from one to two!
Sweet relief, where have you gone? ...
Please hold me, Sleep, sing me a song,
a lullaby of soothing rhyme
to save me from committing crime.


by Esther Leclerc

Comments (19)

Ah... loved this... the eternal lament of poets (sleeplessness) : D Great rhyming here, and fantastic humour (Grin!) ... loved that 'cat'... L
A fine howdyadoo of sleeplessness and lost threads. I know well the feeling of down being up and up being down. Poetic threads can be difficult to knit together, but sleeplessness? Just listen to politicians for 5 minutes...zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz Hugz jack :)
Esther, The good news is ... that you were not hung -over any 200 foot cliffs - - - The bad news is ... that you put an imaginary cat into the dishwasher last night, and then felt so bad about it, that you threw your best dishes out into the street! The neighbors were good about it though, Particularly, the guys, when you decided to use the hose to take your shower in the front yard this morning! (Think twice the next time that you want to have a party!)
Ah Esther, that sweet sleep that 'knits up the ravelled sleeve of care, balm of hurt minds, great nature's second course, chief nourisher in life's feast' You see Macbeth had the same problem! How delightfully you have penned the desperate horror (for me, it's the show and the things I have left undone, or the piece of music that runs round and round and round) . I'm sure we all can relate to your words, shaped so eloquently and rhythmically. A flavour of the Cat in the Hat perhaps? I did enjoy this one - you have a wild sense of fun. love, Allie xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
This is brilliant Esther! You have captured the intensly frustrating half-way house between sleep and wakefulness, the fatigue and the frenzied, frazzled mind that results from sleep deprivation. Love the way the humour adds to the frenzied desperation of your plea.10 from a fellow insomniac, Justine.
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