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Rate this poem:5.0 / 8 votes
There is an angel who sits upon my shoulder who goes by the name of Death,
And though I cannot always see him, upon my neck I can always feel his breath
As he whispers to me relentlessly, deftly using my soul’s own Shibboleth.

He is my phantasmagorical companion from which there has thus far been no escape,
One who has no single voice nor form yet is somehow always horrific in his shape
When my mind’s eye sees him lying in the darkest shadows of my brain's path-illogical landscape.

For while it may be hidden, we are locked in eternal battle, one to which we both are bound,
And though the clashes rage on deep within, the fighting furious and yet without a sound,
The hardest part is not the fighting, it is the feeling that there will never be any respite to be found.

This war is one without casualties but still with victims–its battles waged within the mind–
But even having entreated aid from all my demons with any values I could trade in kind,
I have yet to even dream of any type of peace accords to which we would both agree to bind.

But what I have paid in pain to learn in this seemingly Sisyphean struggle is that one cannot sit idly by,
That every new assault of his is but an opportunity for me to learn new tactics that I can in future then apply.
Thus I have vowed: Whatever new mental munitions he has in store for me, nor what deadly schemes I must yet defy–
Though I know, like you, I too will one day meet my end, it shall be he who will be the first to die.

-- by ThoughtsFromB4

About this poem

For the last day of mental health month, I wanted to share something I wrote that deals with some rather dark struggles. Struggles that I know others face as well. Struggles that I hope might be eased for just one person who reads this, even if only in the smallest way.

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Written on May 31, 2024

Submitted by thoughtsFromB4 on May 31, 2024

Modified by thoughtsFromB4 on May 31, 2024

1:33 min read


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Discuss the poem There Is An Angel Who Sits Upon My Shoulder Who Goes By The Name Of Death with the community...

  • Symmetry60
    The angel of death sits upon everyone's shoulder. It is an inevitability. Death is merely a chosen timeline from the source of a given life. What we do between timelines are the lessons we incur that lead us closer to the source's wisdom and love. Strength is not the absence of fear, but the defiance of it and the will to overcome it. Peace comes as a result of defying the inclination to succumb to those forces seeking to pull us below our true purpose which is to learn from both good and bad experiences. Grab hold of the dark and embrace it with all your might because these are the greatest lessons and opportunities to incur strength and wisdom. Without struggle life would be sedentary with nothing to strive toward. Every time we tell death no it raises our vibration closer to our source. There is more beyond the flesh. This is merely a steppingstone toward your true light. Thank you for sharing your journey. Peace.... 
    LikeReply3 hours ago
  • achebe_d
    Thank you for talking about mental health. It was nicely written
    LikeReply1 day ago
  • Courtnie.mckern
    This is a very well written depiction of the struggles we encounter through life. But knowing in the end we will be overcome and be the victor
    LikeReply2 days ago
  • karlcfolkes
    I thank you for this meditation poem, reminding us that the struggle for our wholeness is continuous, requiring all of us to recognize and accept that we all have broke parts deep within ourselves (our ‘demon’ selves or our “Angels of Death”), that require our constant awareness not to ignore, but to come to terms with honestly and prayerfully if the healing we need is to occur. I consider this a confessional poem. Thanks for sharing. 
    LikeReply3 days ago
  • crucifiedinhim2
    Nicely written
    LikeReply3 days ago
  • Abbykesington
    Thank you for sharing this poem. We all battle with mental health...
    LikeReply6 days ago
  • grs5757
    this is the constant of death. that angel is always with us and we fight to get each day God set for us. courage not always easy to find but a great reward in the end
    LikeReply9 days ago
  • amandak
    Talented, great write
    LikeReply10 days ago
  • dawg4jesus
    yep, that's what I'm saying
    LikeReply 113 days ago
  • robertrad2021
    LikeReply 113 days ago
  • Dianejean57
    Well done.
    LikeReply 113 days ago
  • heathert.34240
    Fascinating to look into the depths of your mind and how unnerving it can be for you, thanks for allowing us this poem to face our own inner fears
    LikeReply 114 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      let me preface this by saying nothing in the following is in any way a negative response to your words (and I thank you for taking the time to comment) but it is merely the perfect opportunity to be more explicit of the details so that it may perhaps be more relatable to those with bipolar and/or depression.

      That said, based on my understanding of the various medical literature my brain is no different than around 40+% of people who suffer from bipolar in terms of the experience of suicidal ideation which I will say is quite different than true suicidal thoughts or planning which is a more serious but also more transient condition generally regardless anyone experiencing the latter, help is available and we all love you.
      In my case, I am lucky in that I have a robust network of friends and family, a supportive job, and the outlet of my writing. Those reasons are why I hope that the time I spend writing will help at least one other person who perhaps does not have the things that I do in life to make my own experience of this easier.
      LikeReply 114 days ago
  • moonlitrose
    i felt this poem deeply,i wish i had your ability to use such amazing vocabulary
    LikeReply 115 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      A most heartfelt thanks for the comment. I am sure I learned the words no different than you or anyone might do so: curiosity (or perhaps lack of "normal activities haha) + dictionary + time

      LikeReply14 days ago
  • Kixy
    What an amazing read. The fluidity, imagery, and vocabulary are lovely.
    LikeReply 115 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      Thank you for the kind words. It was a labor of both pain and love, and the fluidity was something I tried to keep in check as each stanza grew in size. Since brevity has never been my strong suit, and the content was dark, I wanted to at least make the read as nice a painless as possible. 
      LikeReply14 days ago
  • Kfoxy1411
    This is very deep. Pain, depression, sadness, thoughts of despair— I feel it all. And I can truly relate. Thank you for sharing.
    LikeReply 116 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      my goal for each piece is for it to help a single other person feel less alone in their struggles. When a person takes the time to validate those efforts, they reciprocate that connection and I too feel less alone. Thank you for taking the time to do so. 
      LikeReply14 days ago
  • dawg4jesus
    I needed a dictionary, but still a good poem.
    LikeReply 116 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      so you are saying you had a good time :)
      LikeReply14 days ago
  • thoughtsFromB4
    This is the image I created wo go with the poem
    LikeReply16 days ago
  • Lacey,J
    I felt your words, thank you for that
    LikeReply 116 days ago
    • thoughtsFromB4
      I can only hope the feeling was one that added some small bit of good to your life my friend
      LikeReply14 days ago


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"Poetry.com" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 Jun 2024. <https://www.poetry.com/>.

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