Cathexis Northwest Press

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Falling Nowhere

Gray fog coils around you. Heavy, weightless wisps churn the air you breath viscous. Shapes

fade in and out of the penumbral darkness. They reach out to you. You try to grab for them, and there’s a moment of cool, comforting stillness before they fade back into the endless fields of

gray and you find yourself falling without moving, struggling to find a ledge, a hand, a branch, a

bar, anything to hold on to as you plummet endlessly nowhere but find only the half-real shades

of a world you aren’t sure exists. Down, down through the endless atmosphere of the gaseous

ghost of a planet until you feel so insubstantial you’d even welcome the messy sensation of a

crash. So, you tug at the fog itself. You try to rend it apart, to make it submit, to force it into

something even somewhat solid so you can climb your way out. Silhouettes worryingly glance

your way, but you ignore them. You can’t feel their hearts over the humid thrumming of your

own. It sprouts roots that curl into the infertile air, soaking up the fog and snaking out and back

in on itself in endless loops as a withering creeps inside. You want to pull it all down, to shout, to scream, to whip the fog into a storm so violent it has no choice but to spit you out. At least when

you hit the ground, out in that world where the worried shadows might or might-not live, you can stand back up on solid ground. That’s all you want: to stand up. To feel something real beneath

your feet.

Jacob Klein is a recent graduate from New Jersey who graduated with a B.A. in Creative Writing with a History minor from Farleigh Dickinson University. He is an emerging writer currently working on his first novel and with an unpublished book of poetry based on Ovid’s Metamorphoses. He writes both poetry and prose and tends to lean towards the mythic, the fantastic, and the bizarre in my writing.

"Falling Nowhere" is a poem about depression and what it feels like when it can no longer be ignored. This poem was written the day after Jacob left a psychiatric hospital about the day before he was admitted to that psychiatric hospital. His symptoms mainly manifest as dissociation rather than sadness, which is why, rather than melancholy, "Falling Nowhere" is permeated with a sense of detachment and frustration. Dissociation is a difficult sensation to comprehend for someone who has never felt it; you can say "I feel like a ghost" or "nothing feels real" as much as you want, but the true frustration and feeling of powerlessness and hopelessness is impossible to capture in simple explanations like that. So, "Falling Nowhere" was written to be something to point to when asked what he was
experiencing.