Nov 23 09: Staving Off Sleep

November 23, 2009 § 12 Comments

Staving Off Sleep comes from the Poetic Asides prompt that ask us to write a poem about noise. I’m an introvert and a HSP (who has learned to cope quite well), so noise is a big issue for me. I need isolation frequently to recharge and can be overstimulated by activities that most people find boring. 

But some kinds of noise I can’t avoid.


Staving Off Sleep

I stave off sleep like an Amazon warrior woman –
The battle rages until I’m forced into submission:  
melatonin and dull TV frequently black my eyes. 
My ritual battle brings me nomadic sleep, 
for I can’t trust the enemy.
When I’m awakened at 3 or 4am by (what? – I have no idea),
there’s chattering in my room. The soft words hum
and waver, female murmurs. 
I toss and turn to still them, I throw my spear at who dares
disturb this queen (somehow in the dark, I have joined the enemy),
but still it buzzes. What does she want,
I wonder, and can’t she shut up? And as I
settle back into the pillow warmth, I hear an answer.
Now my head cocks, my breath quickens (are they talking about me?),
I can’t make it out. I’m waking more and more and  
a third voice joins the conversation and a fourth.   
Now it’s me who wants to shout –
Hey! What about me?
It’s my damn head you’re in, let me in on it.


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§ 12 Responses to Nov 23 09: Staving Off Sleep

  • bschooled says:

    This is fantastic, Pamela. And so surreal. Like Scott, I have a similar problem. I hear conversations that I can’t always understand, but can’t seem to break in to, either. And waking up past 5am is unheard of for me.

    I’m also starting to worry because melatonin isn’t working as well anymore.

    But as Don would say, enough about me.;)

    You definitely have a gift for poetry, Pamela. I can’t wait to go through and read some of your other pieces.

  • pochp says:

    Hi Pam,
    I just finished a draft about sleep and bio-rhythm! (might be posted now at WP Writers Group).
    Maybe I should attach your great poem to the post.
    What do you think? :-)

  • omawarisan says:

    I’m fortunate in that when I think its time to go to sleep, I’m out.

    My wife fights the battle you describe. Your description makes my understanding of what shes going thorough a little clearer. Thanks!

  • I love the poem, but it’s just too odd for me…..I experience the same thing that you’re describing. I sleep with ear plugs because the slightest sound will keep me awake. But as I’m drifting off I ‘dream’ of nothing more than barely heard, boring conversations between people in other places. I almost think it may be a form of an outer body experience. It’s usually one of 3 families talking. Crazy.

    • Wow, Scott, I thought I was the only one. But you can tell it’s one of three families? I never know who it is. And it does feel like an out of body experience, as if listening to another reality.

      • It’s really hard to describe. But it seems like even though they are unfamiliar voices they are the same voices droning on about monotonous stuff. Out of body experience wasn’t the right way to describe it really. More like…..easedropping(?) Or is it eavesdropping?

  • Neil Reid says:

    We should talk! I’m an introvert but OSP (oddly sensitive person), so I understand part of what you mean! Back on the road for the next couple days. But I’ll catch up once I’m home again. Keep, keep on writing your wonderful poems!

  • purple says:

    Greetings Pamela, I have been sneaking in to look around and just wanted to let you know I am enjoying your poems.

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