Antebellum

Updated: May 2



Antebellum, Latin for "Before a war"

But before you ask me about it,

The war is with myself, within myself,

A war that has been brewing

Since the day I came to term with

The conscious working of my mind,

Sometimes borne out of malignancies

Of my own withered and fragile mind,

Sometimes instilled into my train of thoughts

By people who shouldn't exist in my life,

But have still managed to carve an obstinate space,

Like termites inside of your ancestral cupboard.

So how does it feel before a war?

Years ago, I read somewhere that

The times leading up to a war

Are similar to the calm before the storm,

You know what lies ahead,

But you also know that you can't deflect the storm,

So you collect your thoughts, of course,

Things that you need to get through during the storm,

And you lie back on the recliner by the window,

Feeling the arid air make your throat itchy,

A week ago I read something totally contradictory,

That the time before the war is as scary as

What happens during the war, and after it,

And I think I find more sense in the latter,

Because often in the years and the months

And the days and the hours

And the minutes and the seconds

Leading up to the final moment

When my heart, mind, brain and soul

Take out their swords and draw against each other,

I experience the same qualms and anxieties

As the ones that I feel when I eventually burst out

In a rainbow of emotions, more on the adverse end

Of the spectrum than what it holds on its favorable end;

Or to simplify, antebellum prepares you as much

For the aftermath of the war, than the war itself,

What happens before a war, even if it's with yourself,

Is like the trailer of a movie -

Sometimes it gives away everything about the movie,

Sometimes it keeps you guessing,

It's the trailer that cons you into watching the movie,

Irrespective of how devastating or captivating

The actual movie might be,

The same goes for antebellum -

Sometimes, I am too scared by everything

That my mind tricks me into believing,

Something, when my mind is blank,

I still find ways to prop up my elbows

And spiral down the gigantic stairs of angst,

And try as I might, there's no escape to it.


//NaPoWriMo, Day 13

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