One of the disconcerting things about depression is its wordlessness. It’s a sickness of the vocabulary as much as it is of the synapses or the serotonin reuptake modules. Rather than sketching ideas in conversation with friends you find yourself turning your adjectives and nouns to another purpose – containing the spillage inside your brain by describing it, identifying it, pinning it to a board. But you’re building a sandcastle while the tide is coming in, taking arms against a sea of troubles.
The letters simply tumble and sink away.
The scraps below are attempts at describing or identifying or pinning from various times. I don’t know what to do with them so I am going to leave them here.
Occasionally words are too scratchy. The verbal paintbox I use to sketch the money to pay the rent dries out and crackles. Sentences can be constructed but the brush strokes are crabbed and small rather than languorous and fluid. Thoughts get constrained into boxes. Living things cooped up like battery hens without the room to flap or flutter. The crabbed writing and the crabbed thinking loop in some horrible recursive version of stupidity, a creeping idiocy.
Stunted thoughts and phrases cluster together like soap scum in the sink, bobbing on the plug-tide. Islands of the stuff spreading like a rootless, moronic mulch against a sea of sleeplessness and wordless frustration. Eutrophication in reverse. Blooms and blooms of worthless sludge sucking at the oxygen and drowning. A tangle of Ophelia’s flowers and Lizzie Siddall’s body in John Everett Millais’ bathtub.
The current drags as much as it pushes and where language ebbs, pictures flow. Nuance and feeling crawl through fingers framing an iPhone camera although they will later refuse to type.
A mouse scurries from one side of the tube tracks to the other. A furry foreigner. Without language there is no way to connect with or comprehend the creature. No sense of even being in the same epoch. Train approaching. There it is. In your mind you fall and the jolt of pain as the front of the tube catches your shoulder comes through like an echo from another world – that other reality. Nausea rises. You blink. The train stops.