J. R. Beaton

for when it consumes me again

My hands begin to tremble,
and then they’re numb.
This isn’t new to me,
I know what happens next.

A tightness in my chest,
each breath comes in a short panicked burst.
Ice cold but I feel on fire,
face dripping with sweat.

Each minute feels like an hour.
One — the walls begin closing in;
Two — I can barely move;
Three — I’m being crushed.

Hour three lasts longest;
every negative thought or doubt I’ve ever had on replay,
like a movie reel in my mind,
but there’s no stopping or pausing.

I’m trapped within a fog;
a fog within my own mind.
Grey haze so dense it extinguishes all sound,
but then it begins to lift.

Rays of light force their way through,
but darkness has a way of lingering.
I’m sitting here, sweaty, scared and waiting,

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