Over the years I have written a significant amount of poetry. Most of it was done during a very dark time in my life. I was depressed and suicidal. So the content is extremely negative. It was about failed relationships, hating myself and the darkness that had all but swallowed me.
Three years ago, I compiled over 150 of these poems into a book that I intended to self-publish called “Blood Roses”. That was as far as I got. I couldn’t and still can’t make up my mind if I like them or not or if they are something I even want to attach my name to. They are not a true reflection of who I am now. Most of them were written almost ten years ago. That was a different life and a different me.
When I am depressed, I read through them and they are great pieces of work. They are angry and foreboding. They are the innermost thoughts of someone with depression struggling to find the light and failing. They are tears, they are screams. When I am happy, I don’t recognize them and think they are all crap and overly dramatic. I can’t put my head in the place I was at when I first wrote them. It feels like I am reading someone else’s words.
I’ve toyed with posting some of them on my website, but every time I get the page ready to go, I get cold feet and pull them. There are some poems about specific people who know well and good that these were written about them. I don’t want them to read them and think I am still hung up on them. It couldn’t be further from the truth. Some days it feels like a waste to have this much sitting around doing nothing. But I can’t actively promote a book that I don’t believe in. It’s the same as a 50-year old musician singing old songs about the rebellion and sex, drugs and rock and roll they experienced in their 20’s while in reality living a cozy, middle-aged life in a huge house with a wife and kids, driving luxury cars. It feels forced and contrived.
Certainly writing most of this down stopped me from putting a gun in my mouth at times. Writing is incredibly therapeutic for me and I can purge a lot of demons with a keyboard and a gin and tonic. My Gmail account has a drafts folder full of dozens of emails I have never sent. The therapy was just getting it written down.
Maybe one day, if I become a New York Times bestselling author, this will finally see the light of day, as people scramble to see anything I have written, but I think until then, they will be put to the darkest depths of my hard drive and left to gather digital dust.