Monday, 9 September 2013


I lie quiet - darkness-shrouded,
toast-warm, but uncomfortable,
the ceaseless torrent of chatter
wearing smooth the jagged points
of my thoughts,
then upsetting them,
washing them, churning, separated,
to new resting places
on the bed of Nightriver.

My mind switches subjects
as a Pony Express rider
changes horses -
from stirrup to stirrup,
never touching solid ground.
No time for rest, not even now -
the dedicated time of sleep.
(The mail must get through!)

The button-pressed, blue-figured, back-lit clock
silent shreiks
"Too late to be night-time,
too early to be day-time!"
those unaccounted hours
belonging neither here nor there -
the Limbo of Insomnia
foist upon me
like a prison sentence
awaiting appeal.

Refreshing my position
both physically and mentally
I attempt meditation
that I might silence
the noises and voices,
the screech of speech,
shouted word unheard
but loudly imagined -
to block out all
with a warm blanket of

Silence falls.
blessed peace
for one minute -
maybe two,
and then the chattering starts anew,
insistent and persuasive,
devilish and grinning,
prodding, poking, snarling
"You - will - not - silence - ME!"

With renewed determination
I try to shut it out
to bar the door against the ram,
to sand-bag the breach against the flood
to patch the cracks with wet clay
'til nought but the faintest trickle
Breathe slow and deep -

Peering deep into and beyond
the backs of my eyelids
I feel the darkness
slowly closing in
on the candle flame
of my imagined vision.
on the flickering dancing
tear of light
I am aware -
the peripheral vision slowly fades
from red to black,
like a vignette -
gradually sucking light
from the centre
into the dark edges until
all is absorbed,
all is edge,
no light remains.
I sleep..........
The day creeps round the curtain edge
and slides, spiteful, along the wall.......

©Rob King 2013


  1. Brilliant. This is EXACTLY how it is!! Lovely word/images, Rob.

  2. Thanks Lynne! I have a lot of experience to call upon! ;)

  3. Certainly bears another reading, Rob! I seem to have moved away from this depressing state, but I well remember how it feels. Hope it doesn't occur too often.

    1. Nothing serious Lynne, but I sometimes hanker after an unbroken night - such luxury is but a distant memory!