The Bell Jar

This community is comprised of poets who have been touched by mental health issues directly, as well as through family and friends. The goal of the community is to embrace the creative energies, and to end the stigmas that are associated with the various mental health disorders. We will also offer resource information for anyone wanting to learn more about mental health issues.
SCHIZOPHRENIA (not by Kyle Kish) - 06/19/2010
by Kyle Anne Kish

by D. James McKee

there is a beast hidden beneath my bed. while in dreams, i cower
between soft white sheets, his breath, laboured and foul, curdles
the warm milk on my stand.

he waits, a patient predator fawning on silence and shadow,
hugging obsequious corners where darkness and dust-
bunnies gather to grow.

the moan of a floorboard, a whispered foot-
fall and he coils, hoarding charcoal thoughts
like leather-bound eggs. with diamond-
edged reason and reptile cunning, he plots
my demise.

he scatters me like heady wine:
he steals my strength and blurs my mind.

his two-tyned tongue makes meat of innocence, tracing faults
in yieldless, prophylactic, lines: a scarred and faithless mar-
riage of space and time.

his indelible venom pools in steaming indigo: injection
sites for the misshapen sanguine faces racing madly beneath
my pale skin, making for the pounding red path, chamber
of the serpentine drum.

with acid-balm lips lapping hungrily at my unguarded
throat, he sets my face in a pillow of stone and scales
the peaks: a mailed curtain draped from my two-post


so small, I curl my spine,
face pressed to knee:
searching for light in an end-
less night, seeking the solace
of heaven, slamming the door
in the side of my head, to silence
the voices that follow.

through the transparent sides of their pharma-fed ovipositer,
the pills glisten: milky gems, tepid and bitter and curdled,
wholesomeness expired somewhere in the dark, before
the cold bland rays of dawn.

tonight, I sleep with the blue angel,
who soothes
to silence both the beast and me.


Author's Note: As Alice Cooper once said: "Welcome to my nightmare..."

Posted on 03/23/2010
Copyright © 2010 D. James McKee

Beautiful, soft poetry (NOT by Kyle Kish) - 06/09/2010
by Kyle Anne Kish


To Yield Soft Words...
by Wayne Tate

Moments like this
rarely come to me...

Soft eyes...
reflective tears
body bent,
rent and raw...
with words violently
slamming themselves
back and forth in the dark din

I am scared to ask
but I need an answer...
How do you define with a pen
the wet and wrenching rhythm
that no longer recalls warmth,
nor courage?

Should we risk all
while seeking the significance
of ourselves?
Digging our desperate,
and frantic heels into the
fleshy core of our hearts
while softly screaming...
Please...don't leave me...?

Attached by the threads of sadness
Held together by the breadth of a pulse...
that beats its own thick cadence
before it realizes its mistake
and finally turns to beat you...

Do we hold onto lovers
begging them not to feel what we feel,
or hear what we say to ourselves
as our once proud souls grow
a darker shade of blue...?

The murmurs...
the whispers..
telling you that blood is blood
regardless if it comes from a river
or is squeezed from a stone.

Within this love...
Capturing the senses
that are not your own.
Embracing the heat
that claims your skin...
touching every string
that connects the "you"

to "them"

…and that is your pain...

That as you
soundly sink into the arms
of the one you love,
wishing them the sweetest of dreams;
in the peaceful hours you share
before the dawn;
pressing your feathers
further back into their cage...
Completely scared out of your mind;
you will remind yourself...
that no matter how connected
your heart may feel...
no matter how much you love
the touch and warmth of the lie...

...you will always dream alone...


Author's Note: I have to thank Sarah Wolf for this piece. I asked her to give me 5 words and a mood and she delivered 5 words: courage, loss, sadness, dream,lie The mood: despair - Thanks for the inspiration Sarah :)

Posted on 05/27/2009
Copyright © 2010 Wayne Tate

Our next featured poet...Jon Kary - 11/17/2006
by Michelle Angelini

Please visit the forum for an enlightening interview and poem links with Jon Kary.

Also, if you would like to be featured in The Bell Jar forum or interview a poet to be featured, please contact either Kyle Anne or myself. We always enjoy our roving reporters.


Wendy Sparling...featured poet. - 07/17/2006
by Michelle Angelini

See her interview - very interesting - and links to her poems in the Bell Jar Forum.

Thank you Wendy, for being our featured poet. ;-)


Our next featured poet... - 05/30/2006
by Michelle Angelini

is Julie Adams. Her poems are featured here on the main page. I've posted her interview in the forum.

I'd like to thank James Zealy and Jersey Gibson for being our last two featured poets.

From now on Kyle Anne and I will change the featured poets every 2 weeks, so that everyone in the circle will get their 15 seconds or so of fame. As Kyle Anne mentioned, we are also looking for roving reporters to interview upcoming featured poets. IM either one of us, telling us who you'd like to interview. After that, the poet featured has the choice of picking and interviewing the next one.

Forums (members only)

Featured Poems

Andrew S Adams
Julie Adams
Michelle Angelini, Circle Moderator
Steve Baba
Kimberly Bare
CM Bauer
Ashley Beaudoin
Ginette T Belle
Nanette Bellman
Nikki Benson
Jim Benz
Ava Blu
Kristine Briese
Lisa Marie Brodsky
William Brunk
Amanda Bullington
Shayla R Cakes
Cathlyn Cartier
James Cavet
Racquel Cervantes
Mo Couts
J. P. Davies
S. Elizabeth
Rhyana Fisher
Jared Fladeland
Richard D Frederick
Wendy Geal
Jersey D Gibson
Derek Gregory
Meghan Helmich
Jeanne Marie Hoffman
Aaron Howard
Rachelle Howe
Alisa Js
Maria Kintner
Kyle Anne Kish, Circle Moderator
Martini Koy
Ann Krischus
Maryellen Lebeda-Parra
Paul Little
Melina Raven Maness Diebold
Amanda L Marron
D. James McKee
Aaron Michael
Cole Miller
Harold Millican
Jean Mollett
Emily G Myers
David Neubauer
Amy Niggel
Katerina T Nix
Vikki Owens
Robin Patterson
Lacy D Phillips
Bryan Poole
Patricia J Reed
Deborah S Regan
Nikki Rice
Omi Salavea
Michele Schottelkorb
Mainon A Schwartz
Elizabeth Seago
Anastasia Selby
Eric Seligmann
Joan Serratelli
Anastasia Shows
Robbi Skaera
Kalikala Smith
Melinda Sordino
Wayne Tate
Matthew Taylor
Indigo Tempesta
Uriel Tovar
S.J. Tyler
A. Paige White
Sarah Wolf
Arianna Woods
Bet Yeldem
James Zealy
Kate Zimmerman
Circle Index

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