Unlike Lightning

Author: Sophia Falco

I once wrote, sorrow strikes as lightning, but really the bright flash is nonexistent, but really strikes is an understatement. Darkness has permeated into my world like a heavy cloak that I am unable to shake off.

If only sorrow really did strike as lightning: quickly, a flash, zigzagging, blinding, and out of sight out of mind. Then sounds from an unknown entity that dissipate into an abyss.

Depression is another story. I convey in countless metaphors, and continue to do so. But what about facing it head on, looking at in the eye without beautiful yet devastating imagery? That would be too boring. I’m already living it. This story, not a fairytale, but instead a nightmare.

She said I am strong, but I was defiant, and I snapped back “no” then started to cry. If only I could believe it. Believe it. How to hold on to hope? How to believe in oneself? I used the word believe three times, and does it lose meaning the more I write it? Does hope start to dwindle like that bonfire? Flames dancing, but soon stopping thus losing light.

It’s not bright in here. Here I am in this world. Not a traveler to destinations, but traversing through my mind. What lies inside are dark caverns, and mazes and I try spelunking to find what? Not gold, but something bright yet that light is missing. I cannot trap it in a bottle, and drink it. That would be external and too easy.

This light needs to come from within, but the word failure looms like that skyscraper—larger than life yet that building is rooted in reality without an anchor, and without real roots diving deep into the earth. I really don’t want to be a traveler of my own mind, but it’s inevitable.

I do not make excuses. She said, bipolar disorder is an illness—yes—this is true, but I continue to blame myself that I can do better, I can try harder, and that this my fault. I am reminded of that song: Harder Better Faster Stronger, but I don’t feel I embody those attributes.

Sometimes I wonder, who I am? Am I just a suffering poet in this world? What about anything else? Instead, I feel like a broken compass; directionless.

I yearn for direction in this life like the monks have. If only I could shed off that heavy cloak of darkness like a snake, and take a hold of one of theirs: bright orange. However, it’s like I’m on a ship without a mast at the mercy of the seas, but really the sea is depression.

How to fight back something intangible? I think of my spirit animal which is a tiger, and if only it could aid me in real life. Oh a tiger with those magnificent eyes. My eyes are brown. Someone once said, like pools of chocolate.

In reality, my gaze has been downwards, and I’ve been unable to make eye contact because I feel ashamed of who I think I’ve become. If only I could see myself through her eyes, and then my being would light up with the thought: “incredible”.


Blogger Bio

Sophia Falco

Sophia Falco is a faithful poet since she finds poetry essential to her understanding of the universe. She is the author of Farewell Clay Dove (UnCollected Press, 2021). In addition, she is the author of her award-winning chapbook: The Immortal Sunflower (UnCollected Press, 2019), the winner of the Mirabai Prize for Poetry, and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Furthermore, Falco graduated magna cum laude along with the highest honors in the Literature Department at The University of California, Santa Cruz. Her Bachelor of Arts degree is in intensive literature with a creative writing concentration in poetry. She loves to take long walks on the beach to be in the presence of the water, and to witness the ocean’s vastness, blueness, and beauty.



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