In My Head - poetry by Ryann Tanap

My heart aches, earth quakes,
bonds break and I am left

And I’m both enraptured
and captured by the pulls that are
Tugging at my soul

And in sight of all that is lost,
I’m left grasping for this and that cause
Reaching for hope

Faith, it has been drained,
Down pipelines of pain
And darkness

Through the deep there are
Flickers of light, and they creep
In unseen crevices

And between the lines I read
Of signs that point me in every which
Way and direction

Confused and abused I’m lost
Feeling off and simply unused
I’m left empty

For in the night there are terrors
Reflected from my own errors, imagined
And set into motion

And my mind taunts me, into believing
Some dangerous reality that has no reason for

Yet it does, yes it does, and it hates and it loves
And it drives me to madness that I have
No way to explain

Again, once more, under the rain that does pour
Down in sheets of stabbing, harsh truths
That these are my days

And no matter what I say, you’ll continue to
Cement my mouth shut, for what I live with
Is what you’ll always fear

And that is why, alone, I am left here
Drying each of my tears, pulling myself up to stand
On my own


 Photo credit:  Armed Services Arts Partnership (ASAP)

Photo credit: Armed Services Arts Partnership (ASAP)

About the Author: Ryann Tanap is a writer, spoken word poet, and advocate of the arts as an alternative form of therapy. She is currently the Manager of Social Media and Digital Assets at the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Prior to NAMI, she worked at AARP and Pilipino American Unity for Progress (UniPro), and completed fellowships with Coro and Global Playground. Ryann has a B.A. in International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies from the College of William and Mary.