Clyde Ryan


Obsessive Corrosive Disorder - Poem by Clyde Ryan

8: 00 p.m.
Three years old 
With tired eyes
She was carried into the night
By her mother 
Who kissed her and whispered 
Goodnight
Her father close behind
Told her he loved her
As he tucked her into 
A bed of clouds
And she floated in their warmth

But something wasn't right
She could see the hallway light
And then she heard it 
Pattering
Like raindrops on tin
The footsteps 
Running and sprinting and closing in
How could father forget to shut the door?

Fix it. Just right. 
Now everything will be alright.

11: 00 p.m.
She should be tired
After her first day in third grade
But her sister sleeps
With such a loud silence
And darkness stretches the distance
Down the hall 
To where poor young mother snores
And even further
The miles
To where father watches another woman smile

A creak in the wall- And it returns again
With an unsubsiding fierceness
Breaking in
Chasing and chasing
She must win the race!
She turns and sees
Her stuffed dog lies out of place

Fix it. Just right.
Won't everything be alright?

12: 00 a.m.
She wishes she was tired
As she reflects in dismay
On how much her life 
Changed that day
Her friends had reached out
And they told her she was 
Treatable
Like a doctor tells a cancer patient

And now she wants to lie down
But it's with her evermore
Tirelessly
She can hardly stand it anymore
But she is determined to win
This circular race 
So for an hour she runs about her room
Almost as fast as
Her mind

Fix it. Just right.
Have you ever lived an endless night?

3: 00 a.m.
On a Saturday
And she's tired
As she wonders what her friends 
Had done that night
Without her

And that was the night she decided
To put an end to the game
So when she heard it coming
She didn't run
And it called out her name
As it came thundering through the walls

They collided
And the girl
Shaking
Looked into its face
And knew those hazel eyes
Far too well

So she took its hand
And stood at an open window
As her vision cleared
And she saw the invisible
That the race was with 
Herself
And she would run no more
For a race with oneself
Brings inevitable defeat

And as she hit the ground
She laughed with all her soul
For she had finally learned
How to

Fix it. Just right.
And became one with the night.


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Poem Submitted: Thursday, December 29, 2011



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