Self Sincerely



It is pervasive like the fallout that descended onto the rest of Europe after the Chernobyl disaster. It poisons the soil, killing the life above. The trees are left, forgotten, blown by idle wind that only buffets the miasma. It is pervasive like the inherent loneliness so cloying in the Exclusion Zone. The silence is only broken by idle bird song, but even the birds can escape. The effects are far-reaching but are only felt by one.

This is my cycle.

The merry-go-round sits somewhere in the Exclusion Zone. It always sits in the Exclusion Zone, at times in the center of Pripyat, surrounded by the husks of past human habitation; at times in the forest, choked by brambles and surrounded by pine needles. When it turns, it screeches. When seen, it reminds.
The merry-go-round turns. Slow, the movement hardly felt. It revolves once. The wind blows, a marigold blooms. Striking orange petals tower above the soil, seeking. Dew glimmers. But the flower turns quickly to ashes, as the merry-go-round makes another revolution. It speeds, the grind of metal-on-metal replacing the silence. The world turns to a blur.

Around and around I go, on a forever merry-go-round. Faces fazing, memories passing, never stopping. I reach out into the blur and scream. Innocence – lost.

Writing is timeless, laughter fades.

Worth Lessened

They implicate, insinuate, that “it’s all in my head,” that it is an issue within me. An issue without root, easily solvable. Work ethic, something shallow. A lack of drive or determination. They say that it is my fault.

And the fault is mine.

It is my problem. It is personal, to only be understood by me. I damn myself. I am weak. I break and I have been broken. I am of flimsy construction. My self confidence is brittle. Fragile to the slightest touch of a brushing hand. The pretense is of no matter. Slight, but the grip can tighten. Cracks form, my value drops. I withdraw into a place unknown, isolation is my only virtue. They cannot see me here.

A Leech Discovered

He sits in the room, his eyes glazed over, the words passing but not understood. The face is set, impenetrable. The face of absolute normality, the face that belies nothing to the pain within. He stares silently at the teacher. Words cycle, they blow like leaves caught in a whirlwind but without a beginning. It happened naturally like the wind itself. A force of nature. The face that belies nothing to the outsider. Words are passed, the face contorts to one of a smirk. The joy lasts for a short while before it is blown aside by the winds.

He seems withdrawn but the activity continues. Never ceasing, a perfect storm.

Mouth Closed

The mouth forms a wall. A closed door. A sealed gate. A barrier impassable.I must speak but my lips will not move. The words vanish and I stutter. It is my problem, it is my cycle. My voice is stifled. I think but the words cannot escape – they must not escape. They are imperfect. They are wrong. They will not be understood. Barely passing for justification.

The Unrelenting Cycle

One thought begins with the end of another. I can no longer tell whether I stare at a new beginning or an end foreseen.


Self Sincerely,

And it goes on and on and on…

Author: Michael Sterling

I'm a nerd. What else is there to say?

Tell Me Your Thoughts