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Reaching out for help - and failing

I'm Sorry...


I’m sorry to hear about that

She posted about her sick aunt

Dying really

She hinted at that aspect

But wasn’t it already obvious?

‘I’m sorry to hear about that’

They said

Sad face emoji

She stared at her phone

And it’s comments

And felt suddenly and overwhelmingly,


He texted his ex


In a variation of detail

About his physiological problems

Brought about by real life obstacles

Or were they just the catalyst

For the exaggerated stress

He was enduring?

He knew

As did she

That it was long standing issues

That had brought him to this juncture

Almost to his knees

And that’s what he didn’t want

To be ground to a halt

Nervous breakdown

Or whatever the modern term was.

‘I’m sorry to hear about that’

She wrote

He went on some more

But quickly understood the futility

His pleas and requests

Fell on not deaf ears

As she had heard him just fine.

He was on his own

And had no idea

How to make any of it better

He’d never felt more alone in his life.


Not Sorry.

‘R U Ok’

No, I’m not

But what will you do about it?

What will anyone do?

‘You need to get some help

Have you seen a doctor?’

It’s the first port of call

Doctors come long before

Confession to a friend

Pills come long before

Public admittance

Battles are fought

Long before fragments of defeat

Are admitted.

‘I’m sorry about that’

Makes them feel better

Do they really care?

What can they do anyway?

Sometimes, plenty

Simple practical steps

Take part of the life load off

Offer to pick up a chore

Insist on a personal visit


If only a small amount

Rather than buzzwords

Spewed out like an auto-correct response.

‘I’m sorry to hear about that

Now, where was I?’

© ajl 2019

This is the last in this series. This poem and 9 others are available as a pdf right here for download, called All Empires Crumble. All are from 2019.

art: exsomnis by m_tau

Thank you to M. Tau for permission to use these specific visuals in this series.

See her profile at DeviantArt

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