Bloated – dVerse

Sealed, no, stitched closed,
cotton-mouthed, tongue
sand-papered and glued,
I am bereft of words.
Inside, a war wages
and I am polarised.

A hollow resides in between.

Unable to communicate
the disembowelled,
inarticulate me is silenced.

All I want, all I need,
is to tell you how –
how I gave my all,
fell for you,
and in falling I have
hit the chasm walls,
torn fingernails free
as I reached out to you,
even as you turned away,
and now I am invisible.

I swallow words
– enough to fill a country –
I am obese with all that is unsaid.


This week, on dVerse Meeting the Bar, Brian wants us to write about words – when they fail us, or when they say just what we wanted of them.

I like to think of myself as articulate – in work I am the wordsmith, crafting legal documents, creating something out of nothing, drafting, editing, reviewing, commenting… you get the picture. What I am not so good at (in fact, I am terrible), is expressing my emotions one to one. When it comes to matters of the heart, I am pretty much incapable in that way. If I could resort to communicating by writing things down that would be fine, but in conversation, when it comes to being vulnerable and actually saying ‘I want’ or ‘I need’, then I become mute. The words are there, inside my head, bumping up against one another until they turn to dust. I’m working on it. It’s hard.

This poem attempts to convey this tongue-tied state. I hope it works.

Please pop over to dVerse to read some excellent poems. Join in – we don’t bite!



39 thoughts on “Bloated – dVerse

  1. smiles…i can appreciate that…i think some of it is wanting to put the other first and being willing to give what they want or need…and there is def a vulnerability in love…of laying it out there knowing they might turn you away…

    its the things unsaid that haunt me more than any word i might say…

    1. Absolutely – I learned from somewhere to put the other person first, in my heart. Somewhere along the way this has silenced me. Generally, my vulnerability gets played out inside my head, which is no good for allowing anyone to get close, is it? Still learning, still learning…

  2. it works only for a while to swallow those words… one day they will have piled up and something’s exploding uncontrolled… we’re about to do a communication training to save our marriage

    1. I agree, Claudia. Keeping everything inside is a fast-track to losing the person you want to remain in your life.

      I wish you so much luck with your communication training, what a great idea to try this.

  3. I enjoyed reading your beautifully paced poem. It delivers the pain of things unsaid with clarity and force.

  4. Oh WOW–this is powerfully authentic, raw-edged. And very familiar–you managed to say a bunch of it for me–though I might need to get more out, so thank you for the nudge!

    1. Thank you, Starralee. This is how some of my life has been, and I have to work hard at breaking old patterns every day! There’s always more to come out, isn’t there?

      1. And that was a surprise to me, that there’s always more to come out–I was hoping to be done. But, at least it churns more poetry….It’s some comfort to me, knowing that others have to work at breaking up the old everyday; at least we’re not alone. God bless you, Freya (I love your name, by the way.)

  5. Verbose, yet still inarticulate; gregarious, yet pole-axed by our own silence–you reach out to me, just millimeters from my fingertips–even though I, as a Gemini, tend to utter thought as words before candor or editing can influence what is said. We work a lifetime on our communicative skills, & hopefully if we still miss the mark by the end of our adventure, we will enjoy the Zen encore, & get closer next time; loved your take on the prompt.

  6. I hear you being inarticulate on matters of the heart ~ Being obese of silence and all the words unsaid ~ Lovely share, thanks ~

  7. I know the feeling only too well! In a way, it is quite counterproductive as we remain stuck in our thoughts while the other(s) might have been more capable of hearing them than we give them credit for.

  8. This is an excellent poem Freya you capture that tongue tied feeling so many of us get and you conclude with that brilliant line ‘I am obese with all that is unsaid.’ this encapsulates the feeling so perfectly. Well done.

  9. It certainly is true in many of what are said here! But holding back words can be emotionally testing as it might just flare-up uncontrolled! Nicely Freya!


  10. I understand this, Freya. Sometimes it is really very hard to say what one really thinks. One has the feeling of ‘damned if I do and damned if I don’t.’ Oftentimes we hold back words…waiting for the right moment, which may or may not ever come.

  11. “Bloated…polarised…hollow…invisible…obese” wow, you’re so very articulate, fluent with the written word! i also can write (edit) ideas/thoughts easier than speaking my true feelings.

  12. Its difficult when you want to say so many things but you opt for silence..some times it’s like a bomb ticking you don’t know when it exlpodes..very nice 🙂

  13. There is actually a condition described as Alexithymia..that approximately 10 percent of the general population is challenged with..a disconnection in verbal communication in describing emotion as such…

    The hardest part for to express anger at loved ones..i guess i did not think i was acceptable chance angering someone else..but anger left repressed..
    usually does turn into some kind of somatic pain..

    somewhere as related to the disconnection of being human…

    But in finally learning..that anger is as acceptable as any other emotion..

    those other emotions and languaged ways of connecting..

    are back again..

    like when i am a child..and trusted all…simply 4what is…big picture..
    instead of ALL
    Those details….

    1. Ah yes, I too have struggled with being able to express anger to those who I love, for similar reasons. It’s hard to get over, isn’t it?

      I hadn’t heard of the condition – but having read up about it now, I can see how it can be co-morbid with Asperger’s…

  14. Great job captured the anguish of wanting to speak but failing for some reason. It really does make life more difficult to hold things in. Well done.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s