Moment of Anguish

[NOTE: This is my first tangible attempt at poetry! I am sure it lacks the cadence, tempo, and perhaps rhyming rythm of good poems, but I figured it would be good to write some poem than no poem. Keep that in mind and be gentle with the feedback! It’s a description of what a person feels in the midst/throws of a melancholic deluge, and I wrote it in a contemplative/melancholic mood.]

It lasts but for a few minutes,
Enveloping you in a cocoon of misery,
The intense pain hits like waves of a choppy sea,
ebbing and flowing, pulsating and undulating.

Your fists close, your teeth clench,
Your fingers grasp anything in reach,
Your body contorts into a curled ball,
Your mind likewise a jumbled web of knots.

A torrential gush of emotions,
A deluge of tears left in its wake,
Emptying you of the sickening pain,
Until there’s nothing left but a numbing void.

You are caught – rather stuck – in the deep mesh of agony,
That infinitesimal span of time when everything ceases to matter,
Except for the warring splintered factions of your own psyche,
The internal skirmishes bending your mind into an impossible topology,
Causing your breath to come and go in gasps and bursts,
Each morsel of air consumed and expunged like a knife plunged and removed.

The storm passes, the clouds dissipate,
The gusts of windy emotions now just a faint whisper,
An eerie calmness, a pressure void, descends on you,
Relief washing over you, and yet True Serenity strangely elusive.

A few deep breaths, a dozen rushed gulps of water,
The full force of the agonizing moments of cleansing catharsis,
Now evident by the pronounced sense of serenity you feel,
A well-earned calm after enduring a destructive storm.

Those terrifying and visceral moments of pure anguish,
Had almost managed to beat you down to a final surrender,
You had let go of yourself emotionally and unconditionally,
To the cyclical ritual of catharsis at the hands of a mystical internal force.

But while the emotional self abdicated it’s throne,
The psychological self, the primal will-to-live hadn’t lost it’s grip,
You benefit from touching the abyss, and peering into the darkness,
It leaves you all the more stronger and cleaner, Looking forward to the journey up,
To breach the surface, and perhaps even transcend it to the Zenith.

And yet … for all the gritted teeth, bare-knuckled resilience,
You shudder to think – of the just-eclipsed terrifying moment of anguish .


6 thoughts on “Moment of Anguish

  1. I’m going to give you the bare honest review that you deserve and hopefully, will be able to handle.

    The beginning was very good. “ebbing and flowing, pulsating and undulating.” is perhaps the most poetic line that anyone can come up with. It sounded really good. This made me read more.

    Two stanzas later, I was getting distracted and twice I let my gaze wander to the side pane and allowed myself to click on a comment and open a new tab.

    Further down, I skipped a few stanzas and then came back to them. The description was too long. You dwell on it too much. Go with the flow and don’t push yourself. Learn to end it sooner when you run out of steam.

    Too many words in one line is also a no-no. Don’t stuff the poem. Let it be lucid and free flowing. Too many words will choke it and produce a rasping flow that reeks of forced labor.

    Just my two paise.


    1. Yep, fair points. I myself thought of pretty much the same thing when I was reading, refining and then saw the finished product.
      Like I said, I am more into verbose prose, and elucidating complex ideas or writing detailed critiques or offering nuanced commentary is my forte. Poems are an outside domain for me, and I know I would naturally suck at forming a good poem full of rhythm, rhymes, cadence and flow, and yet keep it brisk and concise.
      But rather than not writing a poem at all, I decided to give it a shot, and this is the best I could muster! 🙂
      Hopefully with time and experience, my poem writing skills will improve, but I do hope that there was enough in there to convey across a sense of melancholia.
      PS: Hope you found the other links you clicked a bit more interesting! 🙂


      1. Haha! I am sorry I was so blunt. But that is how I feel you should get the feedback – raw. I am reading those links now (they’re from your blog)

        BTW, I see lot of potential in your poem 🙂
        So don’t lose heart.


        1. That’s fine man. The blunt rawness is appreciated – from a trusted, inside source/fellow blogger acquaintence, especially when it does make valid points of critiquing. Plus the post had a disclaimer right at the start, indicating my own awareness of the amateurishness of my efforts in poetry so far.

          Had the same blunt rawness come from some random guy on the internet (especially with a cryptic/weird handle), I might have seen it as unkind, unwise and trollish 😛


  2. I think the exact opposite of Aaml, for this poem. Although, usually, most poems should end sooner, I am all for making the reader feel what the writer is going through, sometimes, not through the words, but the length of it as well. So, while what Aamil says is spot on, for me, those are the very reasons why this poems works, because it is on Anguish. I imagined this in a book, rather than on the web. In a book, you don’t have avenues of getting distracted as easily. It is read or turn page. It is not so long a poem that someone will give up on it forever. At the same time, it makes me feel it should have gotten over earlier. Which is part of my anguish as the reader.


    1. Yin Yang analysis – Both extolling it as well as critiquing it 🙂
      Thanks for your thoughts. I think your analysis of “the length of it” is a good one – I felt as much while writing it, almost as if I had to exorcise my angst in a lengthy process of expression.


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