(c) all rights reserved · dverse · haibun · horror · mental health · poetry · PTSD

dVerse — Madness — Possessed

Related image

Mr. Jones tells about his childhood friend, a boy who lived with his mother, stepfather and brothers and sisters. The boy and his sibs never knew who would be chosen to “ride along” with stepfather, but they all knew what it meant.

Years later, the boy, who is now a man, still lives at home with his mother. His stepfather and sibs are gone. He’s under day treatment and anaesthetized to close to a stupor. He doesn’t do much because the shirt on the chair said it will kill him if he does.

Mr. Jones knows his own family doesn’t love him, even though every adult made sure to sexually abuse him when he was a child. He tells of looking through the bathroom keyhole and seeing his grandfather abusing his little cousin. He walked in and became a known witness. Shortly after he told his grandmother, he became a family outcast.

Mr. Jones glances from time to time at the shelf over the fireplace. He tells me only later that “they” weren’t happy that day as he shared the family secrets.

Sane becomes insane
When a subject is used as object –


Laura is the host of dVerse today.  Laura says:
For this Poetics Challenge, write in the 1st or 3rd person of your own experiences (real or imagined) or your witnessing mental health issues. Or if you prefer, base it on a poem which depicts living with, or alongside, ‘madness’ – and don’t forget to reference it!

I used the title, Possessed, because as kids they were treated as objects, and as adults, their psychoses possess them.

Image painted by Paul Wright, with his website link here.

33 thoughts on “dVerse — Madness — Possessed

    1. You have a very clear sense of the dynamic, Bjorn. It might shock you how often this scenario plays itself out in families. What is wrong with humans that they treat their own flesh and blood this way? Devastating is right.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Frightening, maddening, and in part true–wow. It puts me in mind of pedophile priests, and sexually perverted mixed families. “Johnny kisses his sister–You kiss just like Dad does–Uh-huh–that’s what Mom says.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, the tragedy. You have painted the cycle so clearly and starkly. Possessed in so many ways. There is such healing in simply revealing the facts, all the family secrets laid out on the sidewalk. Thank you for letting Mr. Jones be seen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that’s a rhetorical question 😦 Education of parents BEFORE they have kids, a police force that is willing to write the reports, a court (all players) willing to prosecute and sentence. Teaching kids self defense from the moment they enter school and a conditioning to report “bad touch” as a norm MIGHT see an improvement in those statistics.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with Bjorn about the sane becoming the outcast, while the madness flourishes behind closed doors, and the damage to a witness of abuse. A clever choice of name, Mr Jones, so ordinary, it could be anybody. The sentences that gave me chilsl were ‘The boy and his sibs never knew who would be chosen to “ride along” with stepfather, but they all knew what it meant’ and ‘He doesn’t do much because the shirt on the chair said it will kill him if he does’. The haiku is a succinct summary of the situation, Jade.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is devastating, raw and all too real. As a child, both my stepfather and my step grandfather attempted to abuse me, but I fought with every ounce of my tiny being and they never succeeded. I vividly recall the terror. I eventually told my mother, and we left.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Humans are the only species that serve all of the roles of an ecosystem, and it is sad commentary on us as a species. Linda, I’m so happy you were able to fight them off. I’m so glad you told your mother. And I’m so glad your mom and you left. So many children aren’t blessed with any/all of those 3 steps.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. very powerful prose about a subject that continues to be taboo … the whistleblowers are always outcast as people prefer to live in denial … look at the catholic church!
    And this is the irretrievable damage they do to vulnerable children who never recover …

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

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

WordPress.com Logo

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

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.