Ode To Bipolar
By: B. Martin Gibbons
Their breath is agitation, and their life A storm whereon they ride… — Lord Byron (Mania) To you I owe the lightning of the mind, the seething, fulminating, fullness of ideas, genius clattering out prose, poetry, or painting— sleepless marvels—not still-birthing in dim waking (as others know waking). I walk scorched shores with seraphim… : ( : (Depression) To you I owe a thousand gaping wounds, a hundred paltry suicides. My scars screech from serrated lips scolding me for impossible dreams (except when pain pleases). I have cried out my spirit plunging limp thru chaos after chaos: so little of my self remains.
B. Martin Gibbons is the author of two books of dramatic theory published by Mcfarland (2012 / 2016), a prize-winning poet, a film critic published by Intellect (UK) / University of Chicago Press (USA), and a screenwriter. Originally from England, where his earliest poetry was published in small press journals and anthologies, he currently lives in the United States where he is writing his first novel. "Early in 2017 I was locked up in secure unit in a psychiatric hospital where the only antidote for the hours of idleness watching TV in the Day Room and mindless 'art therapies' was to read John Ashbery's Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror and Theodore Roethke's Collected Poems for thirty minutes each night before 'lights out'. It was in those moments after the page closes and the light goes out and before the first invasive inspection for suicide watch that the ideas and the images and the words of Ode to Bipolar began to take shape. "