I am not mad! I am not! Haven’t you been listening to me? They are following me! Can’t you see them on the streets, in the bus how they gaze at me? Watch me? Haven’t you seen their faces? Haven’t you smelled their acid stench as they breathe so close to your face?

You haven’t? You can’t?

Then you choose not to see them.

You have made your bed.

Do not call me mad just because I have chosen to open my eyes!

They are everywhere, in every form, in every breathing thing. Yes, they can hide in the eyes of a child, the barking of a dog, the smile of a pregnant woman. They are so deceiving and their minds are oh so very twisted!

The winter days are the worst for they love the darkness, of course they do. They bathe in the pitch dark nightmares of my very own soul.

I do not sleep at night. I cannot!  It’s not safe, never safe. Not even in my own home. I lock all doors, pull all the curtains and keep the lights on in every room.

Drink.

Smoke.

Weep.

I cannot ask for help!  No one understands me. No one wants to understand me! Of course, I tried it before. I tried explaining it to my closest friends and family. They looked at me…the way they did it…I saw desperation in their eyes as they were about to cry…concerned but mostly terrified of me. But they should not fear me! I am not the one they should fear!

I stopped trying. And, I stopped telling people what was going on. I can’t trust anyone. I cannot trust this world anymore. And the saddest part is that one day you will all think, ‘poor soul, he was just mad’.

No one will know. No one will ever know what had truly happened. Nobody will ever know what they did to me.

No one will know. But, that won’t be the end.

I will become one of them. I will be the one that will haunt others, follow others, and terrify others! Perhaps I will be the one that will gaze upon you, follow you, and drive you to the edge of insanity…

And then my friend, you will have the same words biting your tongue like tiny famished grave worms:

‘I am not mad!’

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