Oh I Didn’t See You There…

Oh I didn't

It’s going to get dark again, even if the sun is shining I know what I’m in for. Staring into nowhere with a sense of hopelessness and despair that seems to have no end at the time. So you’re back, you’ve returned with your sticky, clingy sadness I must wear as a shawl. It’s a shawl made of all my wrong-doings, lost dreams, failed relationships, and a frightening anxiety about the future. It weighs a tonne and I struggle to sit up in bed with it on, or get out of bed, or brush my teeth or my hair…you weigh me down, Depression.

I didn’t know I was feeling so bad until I was in the kitchen making myself a coffee…I had been thinking negatively, granted. And the cold of winter doesn’t make it easy either so the future looks grim with the situation I’m in. This is the exact time the Shawl of Depression draped herself securely around me so I had to drag myself sadly and tearfully back to my bed. I see the sky, the sun, the birds, the beauty – the beauty in everything but me and my life. Then I tell myself off for being so ungrateful and get angry at the things that stop me being who I want to be. My anger covers the fear and anxiety. I would rather be angry than scared. It’s a long process to get to angry. It’s a long, unseen, unknown process that puts me there in the first place though.

I lie facing the wall. I don’t want to look at beautiful things. My eyes are open, I’m not moving though – my breathing hasn’t changed, it’s still, rhythmical and the tears just seem to fall out of my eyes endlessly. No noise, no change, nothing – just a waterfall coming out of my face that seems like it won’t let up. I don’t understand the grief or the sadness. Perhaps it is the broken me saying goodbye to the real me but refusing to let me go… In a little bit I will sit up and write about this. It’s crippling and yet I know I have to ride this out. I know I should take a good look at those feelings but I’m just too angry at the moment…

Kait King 2017

Oh no, I can’t get over it…

Getting over it - whatever

Somehow you get through – it’s not even that you learn to live with these things – they stay in our lives forever as part of who we are. In fact these are the things that make us who we are. They used to say this kind of suffering was character building. That may or may not be so, for me, it allows great reflection and understanding of my capacity to love and give love and in turn what it means to lose that.

One of the annoying things friends and family expect, is for you to “get over it” after a certain amount of time – whatever that time is. But there is nothing to get over. You can’t just imagine it’s behind you – things are not behind us, they are all a part of us. We carry them with the sum of ourselves. Maybe by putting things behind us we let our guard down, we love too easily again, we get hurt so much more because of that. Taking the good and the bad experiences is what makes you the person you are. Are you a fighter? Do you runaway? Are you persistent? Do you give up? Whatever you do, you have to live with it – you don’t learn to live with it – there is no manual. You have no choice, choice has been removed from this section of your life and a loss of some kind has left a crater and a giant rock in the same place. Luckily the giant rock plugs up a lot of the feelings for a while – this is often known as shock. Eventually the putridness of your trapped feelings in this hole in your heart starts building up a mass of toxic gasses which must be expelled. This build up, over any period of time (as long as it takes you), causes a massive explosion. The giant rock is blasted apart from the hole in your heart. The tiny splinters of angst, hurt, devotion, honor,disbelief, love and any other betrayed related feeling you can imagine, is dug deeply into your heart and mind. Each little splinter of that pain has barbs of doubt, guilt and confusion holding them in place in your heart. And we can’t let go or it can’t let go of us or we don’t give ourselves permission to keep moving forward even though we are cemented in that time of tragedy and know that’s impossible, isn’t it?

The hard part is learning to navigate around these losses, grievances and betrayals, eventually like a powerful river we keep flowing around these rocks of hurt that seem like they will never shift or move. But they do erode – the erosion is so subtle and slow we don’t even notice and so it is, I believe, with tragedy, loss and grief; be that for a living being or a relationship of any kind. Loss leaves a big hole and a giant rock that you drag around with you all the time. Afterwards we question everything said and done, what could have been different, the “if only’s” and the “what if’s” with hopeless, empty dreams. Nothing can be changed. It is what it is, but I know I fight against this too, even though I understand the futility of the fight!

I think only in time will I manage to erode down that rock of loss, will I be able to take the sharp edges off and flow a little easier around the things put in my way that I have no way of changing. Perhaps time won’t heal the wounds, but perhaps time allows my river of life to smooth the edges of hurt. Perhaps it lets me build up strength so that I can push past that hurt easier, every time I have to go past that hurt again. Because it doesn’t go away….

Fused, but not at the hip

Fused but not at the hip

I was standing at the front desk, chatting to another work colleague and an awkward scrawny middle-aged man came up to the counter. I was in the watch-house at the Police Station. Being closest, I turned to talk to him. Behind me, I could feel everyone else cringe. I wasn’t sure why, but it dawned on me as I chatted with him to find out what he was here for, why the audible intake of air from my colleagues. I was just in work zone and had been troubleshooting all day.

Let me start from the beginning. When I turned up for work that morning – it was like 4 am or something horrific, being shift work. Anyway, we had three women and a man in our team that night and as shift changed over everyone caught up and swapped information – did the hand over thing. Of course we all gossiped about things we had dealt with, seen or heard that day, what the constables had been up to, failed at, succeeded in catching, blah blah blah and of course, some real oddities and this was one of them.

A young detective came into the office after his shift to catch up with us. I must say, he looked a little green around the gills but I didn’t think anything about it at the time. He gathered those of us who wanted to see (only myself and the guy I worked with), some evidential photographs of a case of abuse. It took a couple of seconds for him to get his personal screen and files up. He knew I was interested in the abuse of the vulnerable, certainly children, but the animals, handicapped and elderly were all in my sights and desperately needed help. So the photos upload to his screen and I take a second to understand what I’m looking at. I thought a burnt body initially and then realised she was on a gurney in a hospital with tubes and an oxygen mask swallowing her “White-walker”-type face. I turned to the detective and with a rather incredulous tone asked him if she was actually alive.

“She is,” he said, “she’s still alive. This woman’s son was supposedly looking after her. Somebody who managed to finally get into the house found her and called an ambulance.”

“I just can’t believe someone so thin is still sucking in air! And how old is she?” Her dirty, mottled skin was just managing to cling to the bones of her body. She was filthy – hadn’t been washed properly in years.

“She’s 92. When we got to the hospital they told us that it was a miracle. I personally think maybe not – poor woman. Her son hadn’t fed her properly or washed her, medical needs ignored. She had maggots crawling around in her vagina…”

“What the fuck! Are you serious man!?” I was mortified.

“I knew you’d love this case Kait,” he said smiling up at me from the desk chair. ” Not only that but her toes had fused themselves together – there was green mould and a stink you would never believe possible. She smelt dead but was breathing – the living dead, literally!” he looked quite pleased with himself at the reality of his reference.

“I’m absolutely stunned! So what did her son say…has he been arrested then?” I ask.

“No, not yet anyway – he’s coming in to be assessed by the psyche team and questioned. Apparently he didn’t know he was doing anything wrong…whatever!”

“Good grief! Who’s he been sleeping with if he thinks it’s normal for flies to come out of a woman’s hoohaa!” We had a bit of a giggle – it’s like that in the face of horror. Apparently she had gangrene as well, on her fingers and other extremities. One of the worst abuse cases I’ve ever seen and I’m sure many of the police – even seasoned ones – felt that way too.

So the day carried on and we had all sorts of shit hitting the fan – parolees, detainees, people who had lost kids, found kids, P cooks, drunken idiots, abusive situations – just the usual crap.

So anyway here is this awkward guy in front of me. I am my usual helpful self and ask him what I can do. He tells me he’s here for an interview with a certain detective. I contact the right detective to come and get him from the watch-house, in the meanwhile I say “So are you having a good day?” just to be polite and make his wait in a police station a little less awkward. I had no idea what he was here for – he could be being interviewed as a witness for all I knew. Well this was a trigger question for him as he just spilled his guts to me about how he had hurt his mother even though he was trying to look after her. He told me about the maggots and the mould – as if I was giving him the interview. It only took him a few minutes to vent his story and he stood quietly with his head down in front of my counter.

“How come you didn’t clean her or help her to clean herself?” I asked cautiously, making eye contact with him.

“Well….I….I….” he bumbled along.

“It’s OK,” I said “you don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to…” I trailed off.

He looked pleadingly up at me and I could see tears peeking out of the corners of his eyes.

“I want to.” he whispered.

I kept quiet.

He took a deep breath in and said “That’s my mum y’know ? I don’t want to wash her there or her top chest or anything! It’s not right…I’m her son – not even a daughter – I couldn’t do it!” The tears fell off his face. After initially feeling slightly ill talking to him, I found I was feeling sorry for him.

“Hell, I can understand that.” And I certainly could.

“So can you tell me why she’s so thin then? Why didn’t you feed her anything?” I pushed on through because there must be some accountability here. How can he get out of this one? Surely if he’d fed her she wouldn’t look like this. I tried to keep the picture of the poor old woman in my head, the decrepit, stinking semi-corpse that was his mother, to give her justice and keep a strong mind in this.

“I tried – I tried everything but she wouldn’t eat anything! I tried to force her but she choked so badly I was afraid to give her anything…I know now that this was wrong…” he looked down at his shoes, the tears still rolling off his nose and landing on the stations’ loud carpet. “She was my mum and she used to beat the crap outta me if I talked back or didn’t do as she bid. So I listened to her when she shook her head away from the spoon or growled at me, I left her alone….I was scared…” A slipknot of snot was making it’s way out of his nose and I tried desperately to keep a gag down. I managed. I passed him a box of tissues gingerly – not wanting to touch his skin at all.

Thankfully the detective who was going to do the interview arrived and took him through the security doors to an interview room. I stood there for a moment and realised where the blame lay in this. Society, society was to blame. Yes, he was at fault for not contacting the hospital or some sort of care for his mother, but he didn’t know anyone would help him. Surely if his neighbours had just said hello once in a while to the slightly, strange, creepy guy he might not be suffering endless guilt as it dawns on him in his slow mind what he has actually done. And his mother would not have had to suffer the enduring starvation and pain she had. It is about accountability – but who is accountable? We call ourselves a welfare state but whose welfare are we really caring for? I consider this man and his mother both victims in this instance and a severe failure on our many organisations parts. He was charged with numerous offences relating to the abuse of the elderly. I wondered if he wanted to lay charges against his mum for what she had done to him – for the monster she had created in him who would become her living nightmare.

What’s really sad is he will more than likely end up like his mum did….

© Kait King, 2015

Blink of an Eye

Domestic violence

that Evil Beast

Thriving on hurt

when all you want

is Peace

Insecure person

always comparing in loss

Punching out your feeble Anger

But your Family pays the cost

Vulnerable? Were you

beaten yourself?

Shouldn’t you know better

than to put them through

this Hell?

Poor little person…

Is that what you want

them to think?

So here you stand at

a Crossroad

You can change all of this

in a Blink

Kait King 2017

Bully

bully

The words that fall off your fingers

as you tip tap text

to me

are untrue, hurtful

and dangerous

You’re acting like

a bully

I don’t want to do that

but you threaten

me with this

You lied and said I fucked him

when it was just a kiss

Why are you so

mean to me

What makes it ok

that you and

your so-called friends

hang me

and then

watch me sway

I couldn’t find anyone

I felt I could talk to

See everyone thought

it was true

But now I’m not here

any more –

I hope that’s better

for you…

© Kait King, 2015

The Slavering Beast

13ghosts bipolar schizo

He could see

and feel

a slavering beast

He could smell it’s

breath

see it’s sharpened

yellow teeth

It wanted him

to do

bad things

It felt like the

Devil with Hate

Not his usual state

of being

but any Angel

with wings

was going to be too late

It said that nobody

nobody

gave

two shits

And do everyone a

favour

Go ahead

slit your wrists

Kait King 2016

Do or Don’t, Can or Can’t

Don't you

Don’t you leave me

left behind

Don’t you cut me

out of your mind

Can’t you see you’re here all alone?

Can’t you hear your heart say

This is home?

Don’t you hurt me for ever more

Don’t you walk away

and leave it all

You can’t hold me like that

then let me go

There’s something more

that you don’t know…

© Kait King, 2015

Crystal Meth-I-Didn’t-Mean (Methamphetamine)

methididntmean-drugabuse_shutterstock-164052779-blowing-smoke-cloud-meth-fi

Crystal Meth

An addicts’ breath

Inhales a smoky dream

In reality

You’re never free

Just a brains’ endless scream

Crystal Meth

Talk in depth

Required by any means

Close to death

That last crystal breath

It’s not as great as it seems

Crystal Meth

Families bereft

Bury a loved one, crying

Cold caress

This Crystal Meth

And our children keep on dying

© Kait King, 2016

Another Opportunity

opportunity

Yes love,

that’s exactly

what you do

Dust yourself off

once you’ve

pulled yourself up

and sing

dance

stand tall

Honey if you

think about it

it’s not the first time

and be sure

it will not be the last

You know the rights

from the wrongs

Don’t ever let them change

your song

With a Nelson Mandelian

grace

and a dignity dug from the deep

You will triumph

and in a cloud of

dust, like a rolling

Pig Pen

You flagrantly walk

your walk into

another opportunity

© Kait King, 2016

The Most Important Thing

THe most important thing racoon

She married him

when she was 23

and he was 37

She thought she’d met

Prince Charming

and he thought he’d gone

to Heaven

It didn’t take long tho’

for him to change

his song

And feel like he

was imprisoned

It happened so fast,

turned life on its arse –

she fell undeniably

and beautifully pregnant

She had her baby alone

while he drank and whored

in their home

No, it hadn’t been long

he was just bored

and it was just wrong

He had already been here

twice in his life

He had other children

and more than one wife

So with dignity

and as a lady

she took nothing

with her

just her baby

She didn’t want half

of the furniture

or a share of

the bling

She knew

she had kept

the most important thing

© Kait King, 2015