jack in the box



door slammed shut

keep out sign hanging on the door knob


panic lives in her chest

winding the jack in the box

anxiety jumps with its

white clown face – screaming

pounding and pounding

stealing another 24 hours


messy bed and unwashed sheets

are left,

twisting and turning around daytime

hair falling out

unwashed face

unbrushed teeth

the rotting of woman


her knuckles start to yellow

and her heart hardens

sagging bags under eyes

droop like grandma’s skin


the dark creases of loneliness

stiffening the body

wide awake with the night

holding hands with one another

skipping over cracks in the sidewalk

nails painted black

chipped and scratched


her toes get caught in the traps

left out for squirming mice

the tight pinch of reality is just a slap across the face

the handprint screaming red over her right cheek



When you think

about hospitals

you think of



unspeakable illness

you think of

her drooping eyes

the cancerous process that

swallows her whole

a tremoring shake.

Broken body

broken limbs crammed in a wheelchair  

When I think

about hospitals,

I think

Psychiatrists and

nurse therapists

medications that

i don’t know how to pronounce.

shaky conversations

laced with panic and fear

near to light

I think jokes from a mouth

of caring and treasury

when i think about hospitals

i think about


and the referral of a smile.