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  • Jimmy Broccoli


Imagine (if you will) being afraid a great deal of the time –

genuinely afraid -

sometimes it presents itself as terror (the night clowns with the scary makeup and meat cleavers and knives) –

sometimes as discomfort (the spiders crawl upon your face in lingering dreams - and your hands are severed stumps, so you cannot wave them away – as you wait for the spider bites and the scorpion stings) –

…never knowing how long it will last makes time move differently –

slower, perhaps

It can be a sensation or prediction of falling while you’re standing still –

the fear of being bitten by the dog in the room –

and there is no dog –

but there is – it’s in my head and he’s barking, showing his teeth, and making an enormous ruckus, angry and threatening and ready –

There is a dog ([I’m] “so scared like I can’t tell ya”) – and there is no dog


My therapist tells me my suicide ideations often sound soothing –

more like an afternoon with lemonade on a spring morning porch, sun baring down upon the chipped paint on the old-style rockers and upon the cracked cement –

than my head sealed up in a plastic bag

with helium (first) and carbon dioxide (second) -

inhale deeply (draw the drawstring tighter – the heavy rubber band may fail),

inhale, then inhale again…

“Dying…is an art like everything else…I do it exceptionally well” – and these are not my words…

My first boyfriend (many years ago) lovingly removed the dog and cat water and food bowls from the garage –

he put the bowls into the kitchen –

he then returned, closed the garage door –

car windows down with key in the ignition –

(“gentlemen – start your engines!”)

Unconscious, he was found by his sister –

home early from school due to unexpected illness…

and I did not leave his bedside for months

Mary put her head in the oven –

and so did Sylvia

Cecelia Lisbon died too –

impaled by a front yard fence post after she jumped from her bedroom window –

Virginia walked into the river with rocks in her pockets –

Chester and Michael knew how to tie knots and hang from them –

…they did it exceptionally well –

ask Kurt what a shotgun to the head will do

At age 22, blood spilled from my wrists as I sat on my front porch –

I cut both open with a broken and whittled down tree twig –

I sawed at my wrists until red did more than drip upon the concrete (it spilled)

[cutting your wrists is very painful – it’s not like in the movies]

I looked into the night sky and saw nothing but blackness –

there were no stars…

It’s fear – it’s being afraid –

it’s being on the 40th floor of a hotel – the hotel is on fire –

and deciding to jump out the window to the ground below, rather than being burned by the flames (quickly approaching) behind you

There is a dog in the room –

and he is not on a leash – he is barking – with teeth bared –

There is a dog in the room –

and he will rip you the fuck apart

…and there is no dog (but there is)

Photo: Jimmy Broccoli

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