Every time he sighed
She heard, I’m through loving you
He meant, I’m so lost

Ennui so intense
That his desire to do naught
overtook boredom

He lives in grey tones
Avoiding the bright facades
Embracing nothing

Ennui is one of those words that I chronically mispronounced for much of my life. Most avid readers will understand this. We come across a word with which we’re unfamiliar and discern its meaning from context without ever bothering to stop and look up the correct pronunciation. For many years I mentally said, “in you ee,” rather than “än wē.” Sometime soon I’ll address “facade” and “docile,” both of which I mentally mispronounced.


Flying seemed like a fine idea, so she stepped onto the balcony and climbed up on the wrought

Iron railing. Too bad, she thought, her wings hadn’t yet come in. Maybe, like wisdom

Teeth there’d be a firm pushing through tender skin as molars tearing gums. A fresh, 

Lilac-scented breeze brushed her cheeks, while the warm spring air caressed her bare 

Arms. It would be a shame to leave on such a pleasant day. Maybe tomorrow her wings

Would sprout, the skies casting grey instead of blue, the wind full of ragweed causing her to sneeze 

Vigorously. Then she would fly away swiftly just to prove she could. Carefully, she 

Climbed down and plucked a lilac from a nearby bush. Ignoring the odd tingling between 

Her shoulder blades, she tucked the flower behind one ear and slipped inside the French 

Doors where beige plush carpeting tickled the bottoms of her bare feet eliciting a giggle.




Waits in a darkened doorway, hand on a cocked hip. Long practiced words roll off her lips. 

“Want some company, handsome?” she huskily purrs. He shakes his head, another demurs. 

She drags on her cigarette, poufs out her hair. Straightens her posture, drapes a bruised leg on a chair.

A noisy crowd leaves the theatre two blocks down. Exuberant young people out on the town.

Arms linked, hands clasped, giggling innocents still. She seeps into shadows, ashamed, a nil.

Imagines the life that might have been hers. Friendships and outings, instead of this curse.

An accident of birth, one careless stork’s drop. There, she smirks, go I, but for the grace of God.


between up
and down,
uneven ground
upsetting my

One moment
I’m giddy,
filled with
capable of
great feats;

The next turn,
my anxiety takes
over, holding
me back, bringing
me down, struggling
to stay relevant
on life’s stage.

Peace is found
where I hover
one foot in
ecstacy the other
in agony, teetering
on the brink and
trying to stay me.

Peace, people.

Effexor and Me: Not Qute a Love Story

A few days ago I shared a post called “Paranoia” about my crazy night of attempting  to ambush an imaginary intruder due to a temporary imbalance in my chemical makeup.

This imbalance, caused by an unintentional withdrawal from the antidepressant Effexor, led me to act in an erratic manner and resulted in a sleepless night. Once I had the drug back in my system all was right with the world. No harm, no foul.

Except that it’s not all right. This wasn’t my first experience with Effexor withdrawal. Several years ago I suffered a similar reaction after a bout with the stomach flu. For three days I kept throwing up my meds along with everything else in my system. 

The withdrawal was a terrifying experience. I had violent night terrors involving vivid decapitations and stabbings. In one savage dream I watched as Charlie Sheen had a leg brutally removed with a chain saw. Reality and imagination merged in my brain until I couldn’t discern one from the other. When I was awake, I experienced brain shivers, a sensation that’s difficult to describe but is vaguely similar to the feeling one gets when one has an inner ear infection. And the paranoia was off the charts. 

Studly was out of town on business, and had no idea how sick I was. I called him frantically insisting that I was near death. He cut his meetings short and rushed home to find me a mess. I had a migraine that had me cowering in our darkened closet and I was certain a tornado was imminent.

He rushed me to convenient care where I was fortunate to be able to see my former general practitioner. Thank goodness he was familiar with my medical history. He immediately asked how long it had been since I’d taken Effexor and got me started on an I.V. Within an hour I was back to being me.

The ironic part of this whole thing is that I don’t take Effexor for depression. My oncologist prescribed it to help ameliorate the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes and night sweats. Since I cannot take a hormone replacement, she believed Effexor would provide some relief. And it does.

But I worry about the future. What happens when I’m an elderly woman and cannot control my own medical care? What happens if at some time I do not have access to the drug and go bonkers? 

Recently I read a novel with a post-apocalyptic theme. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. In the novel a virulent flu has decimated the world’s population, and a group of survivors has sought refuge in an airline terminal. The group has enough food and other provisions, but one character who takes Effexor, soon runs out of her prescription and the group is unable to secure more. That character does not do well and ends up wandering off into the unknown. I think about her often.

Well, this was a cheery post. I highly recommend the book.

Peace, People.


The kitty is too cute to be a symbol of Effexor withdrawal.

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