Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Conditions prevail

The boy’s head
swings from his neck,
a cattail quivering
under air’s humid gaze.

On suicide precautions,
he sleeps in the lobby.
A bed like mine,
but on display.

I wonder how the boy
said, I want to die.

Every day, I wake at six, watch the news.
Watch him sleep.
Dark tufts of hair peek
out of a cotton tomb.

One morning, I crawl into bed with the boy.
His pillow, damp;
forehead, sticky.

He lets me whisper
the week’s weather report
into his ear: highs in the nineties,
lows in the sixties, sunny,
humid, no relief.
Little chance of rain.
Jamie McGrawJamie McGraw lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with her pet hedgehog Bill, and recently earned an MFA from Queens University. Her work has appeared in Beatdom, Loose Change Magazine, and the APA journal Families, Systems, and Health.

Categories: Mental Health, Poetry, Themed

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