Landscape of Pain – a poetic excerpt
Nuances, layers, leylines,
Pain the beginning, the end,
Experience all underlaid
With tingles, stabs, shots.
Coexistent with all memories,
Alpha and omega, ridealong map
Of all knowledge, price tags
Attached to every physical unfolding.
A supermarket extravaganza
Of life, each and every movement
With a price tag attached
For the painful consequence.
What lies beneath the surface
Can barely be expressed
For what it does, inexorable
And forever enduring, eternal…
A series of gentle stabs penetrate
The kneecap, travel into the hip,
Muscles in the thigh spasm gently,
Aches flare, fade, and flare again.
Spreading out, unfolding, it eats
Deep into the pectoral, down, down
And growing sharp, stabs, nerve fire
Lancing down the arm, alive.
Layers of pain so complex they are
A landscape of pulses, signals,
Sensory information bright as any
Nuclear station circuit control board…
The jaw grinds on both sides, the right
Alive with agony, clear delineation
Of a few upper teeth sparking, nerves
Apparently raw, open, being tugged.
Throb throb throb*
Upward the line traces further,
From the jaw into the sinus,
Crackling, a muscle flutters incessant
Within the ear, jaw held tight in defence.
Up, up, up, behind the eye, so far
It has traveled, enduring all the way,
Felt and pulsing along the entire path
It took to get to the face, to be alive.
Behind the eye, into the head,
Encompassing the crown, alighting
Tingles in the scalp, waveform
With purpose, an entire side blazing.
It is a living thing, an entity in itself,
A parasite, one that knows to kill
The host is to die, and yet…
What would I give…to be free?