This is a poem about healing, reaching out, and the path to recovery. This poem contains depictions of depression via the speaker’s environment.


  1. The floor is invisible beneath the piles and piles of clothes forming a moat around your bed, on which you haven’t moved. Your arms, your legs, your body is a thousand tons, the weight of a herd of elephants, you won’t be getting up any time soon. The used-to-be-purple-now-gray t-shirt clings to you, it’s gross, terrible, you haven’t changed for a new one, but you know it’s nothing compared to the rats living in your fridge that hasn’t been cleaned out since September. (You’ll just let them have the food.) Your phone buzzes. You don’t look. No one needs to worry about you right now or hear from you. You’re fine. The room is fine. You’ll deal with it tomorrow.

  2. Today, you left your room. Not a lot. It was just the fridge. It hasn’t started to smell (yet) but you don’t remove the food inside. In the back of your head, you know it will spoil, but the hand stays right where you left it. As you mull over this, a bug crawls under the space between the floors. (You close the fridge.)

  3. The TV hums in the back of your ears, on it there’s a man named Jim and his girlfriend “Pam,” and a Schroot or whatever. You just needed something quiet. Tonight, you’ll have a TV dinner because there’s else to eat. Tomorrow you’ll Doordash. (Or not.) It’s going to be the most depressing thing you’ve eaten in months.

  4. Someone knocked on your door today. Whoever they were didn’t stay; but they left a care package. Inside, there’s a bag of fruit, a blanket, a bottle of bubble bath, and a green shirt with the tag still on.
    “I hope you’re doing okay.”

  5. You took a bubble bath that night.

  6. There’s still not enough energy in you to go outside, but Doordashing is too expensive. You take a fruit from the basket. Tomorrow you’ll clean out the fridge.

  7. It’s a disgusting and tedious process, exactly how you expected. You don’t do it in one go: not everything’s gone. But it’s a start. You’ll watch The Office that afternoon. (His name is Schrute.)

  8. Your phone buzzes.
    “Hope you’re doing better.”
    It buzzes again.
    “We miss you.
    You mark it as important.

  9. The green shirt you’re wearing feels better than the used-to-be-purple shirt. You feel clean. It’s nice.

  10. You load your laundry into baskets. You’ll take it to the laundromat in time. Right now, you’ll sweep the floor. Put trash in bags. Mop.
    Have you seen your floor since August?

  11. You take a bubble bath that night with the leftover solution.
    Tomorrow, you’ll go grocery shopping.

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