Saturday, 10 August 2013

Insomnia OR Never Let a Sandman Wear You Down.

Sometimes we can’t sleep for wrestling with the world’s problems and our own. Where the former is concerned, it’s a losing battle.

Regarding our personal problems…we hold the key to, if not solving them, at least moving in that direction. Insomnia is telling us that we should not prevaricate but take action sooner rather than later. Having decided what we already knew but weren’t quite ready to accept…we can then turn over open our minds to the peace and comfort of sleep.

If only the world could do the same...

Meanwhile, even the human spirit needs to recharge its batteries in order to be restored to positive thinking mode, and that's where sleep comes in.  The trick is, think nice things. Be nice to the Sandman and the chances are he'll be nice to you.


Tossing and turning, unable to sleep,
a desperate yearning for peace
of mind - but they are unkind to me,
the pillows, the sheets, a mattress
that sags in the middle; eerie shadows
on the ceiling, spiders on the wall,
strange noises rising from the floor,
sounds of partying next door
(I was not invited by the way, slighted
as ever…could it be because I'm gay,
surely not? The twenty-first 21st century
is well under way for heaven's sake,
though you wouldn’t think so for tragic
goings-on in countries like Iraq

So what’s wrong with me that people
always seem to be taking the piss,
leaving me tossing and turning, unable
to sleep, desperate for some peace?
Maybe I should try harder to be nice
or perhaps I’m trying too hard,
need to devote more time to listening
instead of complaining, taking
on board this point of view and that?
Mind you, at least I have opinions
worth voicing (well, don't I?) has to beat
recycling the everyday garbage
thrown out by Mr, Mrs and Ms Average
so the neighbours can gossip about
they’re not just keeping up with the Jones'
(and how!) but are actually putting
their money where their mouths once were
before the advertising moguls started
taking over the show, various media pundits
busy partying in the Corridors of Power,
confusing issues, boosting sales of tissues,
inciting dear Average and Jones
to exhibitionism (credit card fetishism?)
raising old Hue and Cry, ‘My, look at that.’
(Oh, and so what...?)

It has to be said, most of us are easily led
by any old halter, cattle to slaughter;
Note, I didn’t say ‘sheep’ - the exclusive
property of those unable to sleep
for sweating over, oh, such pretty lambs
(thanks, Mother Nature, you're a star)
therefore not in the same blanket category
as Average and Jones who'll never
lose any sleep over Dolly clones, let alone
war in Iraq, North Korea's intentions,
Human Rights globally, poverty everywhere,
not to mention the likes of that double act,
Bush and Blair, with whom history is unlikely
(ever) to get even

Alas, it will all keep, while the rest of us toss
and turn, trying to get some sleep

Copyright R. N. Taber 2004; 2013

[Note: This poem has been slightly but significantly revised (2012) from the original that appears in 1st eds. of The Third Eye by R. N. Taber, Assembly Books, 2004; 2nd (revised) e-edition in preparation.]

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