how well can your eyes tell
Image from our series on mental health - Courtesy: Noura

As part of our series on mental health, “Neither pathologization nor romanticization,” people who struggle with their mental health are invited to share pieces of writing, whether in the form of prose, poems, or in between, and pieces of art and that come out of these experiences. You can read the introductory text and other pieces as they are added here:

be careful of this skin

for it is prickly, and it is rough

the roses that bloom may tempt you

until you take a look at the stuff

that makes up this being of mine

that’s found a way to survive

despite knowing it’s never tender

it’s never enough


I am not dead, nor am I alive

I am the in-between that struggles to survive

I don’t require much attention

care is not a constant desire

but a couple of drops can sometimes save

this missing soul, somewhere on fire


so how well can your eyes tell

between the scarlet of roses

and that of blood

without daring to find a way

to touch, and bleed, and hurt

yet somehow stay…

Courtesy: Noura

I’m tired of picking you up

of being so patient with your mistakes

of trying so hard to give you second chances


I’m tired of listening to your stories

of your constant cries and woes

of dragging you around with me everywhere I go


I’m tired of hiding you

of pretending as though you’re not there

of losing people because of you


I’m tired of having you watch me

of losing sleep over your fears

or living in your nightmares each night


I’m sick of you always being there

I’m fed up of your insistent bullshit

I’m tired

I’m so tired

…of being you

Courtesy: Noura

so, this fire inside my ribs

squeezing every inch of my lungs

‘til they are nothing but remains

where else does it go?

these tears that drip like gasoline

and burn the insides of my flesh

engraving a pathway for their own

where else do they go?


these bony hands that I destroy

tremble as they hit the wall

yet slowly go numb as time goes on

where else do they go?


this anger that’s been feeding the flame

for years and years and even more years

has nowhere to go, except back in,

back inside from where it first came.

Courtesy: Noura


You have a right to access accurate information, be stimulated by innovative and nuanced reporting, and be moved by compelling storytelling.

Subscribe now to become part of the growing community of members who help us maintain our editorial independence.
Know more

Join us

Your support is the only way to ensure independent,
progressive journalism