Like mice eating through walls

like mice eating through walls

my mind lies awake at night
wandering, restlessly wandering
wondering about the sounds it hears
worries playing and replaying
tricks on my nervous system
did i lock the door
something is rustling in the back yard
my brain tiredly yawns
go to sleep
(it can’t)
the sounds won’t let me
the silence is too quiet
did i set the alarm
is the phone within reach
(pause, just pause)
i hear them
in the attic
(behind me)
in the walls
(thump thump thumping)
back and forth
all slow and purposeful-like
tigers in a cage
tigers in a cage
tigers in a cage
waiting for me to drift
(almost asleep)
for me to hear them
they won’t go away
these thoughts
these sounds
pictures in my head
something stung my arm
like a sunburn at high noon
centipedes crawling in my bed
spiders weaving their webs
spinning, constantly spinning
(fine silk)
down from the ceiling
get it off me
i can feel them everywhere
(my nerves are at their wit’s end)
the silence keeps getting louder
drowning out the party next door
canceling out the comforting sounds of the neighborhood dogs
as they take their late-night pee breaks
my brain hums in time to the rodent-deterrent plug-ins
(desperate for tranquility)
i suppose repose is out of the question
the invasion begins anew
scratch scratch scratching
like mice eating through walls


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