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Sitting there
Next to my nameless friend
Hearing the orchestra perform
Their instruments echoed through the great hall

Three tiers above the ground floor
I think about jumping off
Thoughts enter as they often do
But for yet another reason I don't

The canyon is free today
Toothless lady behind us waves a flag
Memorable wed woman wears fishnet stockings
Outside rain gently coats the winter streets

I feel so uncomfortable in my chair
I question to myself, "Is it hot in here?"
My head feels warm.
My clothes are uncomfortable

My throat is sore from my medications
These eyes of mine are burning
I'm hungry, yearning for food
Thirsty, for water, for purity

My insides hurt
I have an itch, a tingle
I begin to scratch
The center of my chest

I no longer hear the music
Its all irrelevant
I can't see my nameless friend next to me
I scratch this carnivorous itch

I unbutton my shirt
Placing my hand against my skin
Scratching, scratching, scratching
I feel this burning inside

Rough burlap bags on fire
Spools of barbed wire fighting for position
Vultures pecking at my insides
I must scratch my itch

My fingernails dig deeper
I'm making red streaks across my chest
I scratch at my itch
My itch becomes more powerful

I tear at my flesh
And my skin comes off
The philharmonic ignores me
And I avoid them

I dig
I dig out my flesh
I scratch out my flesh
Until I reach bone

I scratch until I come to my sternum
I pick at it, picking off my flesh
This itch
This constant itch

Blood is on my fingers, on my hand
As I scratch I remove more layers
Scratch and dig deeper
Dig a hole into my bone

Snap my bone
Break and crack
My breast bone splinters
Pieces scatter into the undisturbed stale air

I scratch until I can no longer scratch
I pull out my heart, is itching
I scratch and scratch my heart
I scratch this itching heart

My heart is in the palm of my hand
Still beating, I ask,
What do I do now?
What do I do now?

 2011 David Greg Harth