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A is for Agony (+a brief message from the Ham)

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Hey all! I apologize for neglecting my blog for…uh, a really long time. It’s busy season atA2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775c work. Which means I’ve been having a really, really hard time motivating myself to do anything in my free time (other than curl up in a ball and whimper quietly to myself) — let alone write posts. So, to maybe eliminate my lethargy, I’ve signed up for the A to Z challenge. This means that, for the month of April, I’ll be posting something EVERY DAY (except Sundays) corresponding with the letters of the alphabet. And in case you guys couldn’t tell, today is A.

Welcome to A is for AGONY.


Agony (working title)

The doctor turns, smiles
Somehow I expected a leer
Twisting, stretching his face into something alien
Bulging eyes, the stench of sweat
Flaking rust brown staining his pristine coat
Betraying the repugnance of his crime

But his face is smooth, clear
His eyes bright and warm
Not a speck to mar the whiteness of his clothes
Stinking of bleach and lemons
Here, he says, good as new
His voice tight with clinical friendliness

He gently places it in my hands
I stare at the small, fluttering thing
At the tight, tidy stitches binding it
Where once it was ragged, bleeding
Oh, I say, because there is nothing else
And the thing in my hands trembles and thrums

In the safe darkness of my bedroom
I listen to the beat, never a falter
Only an echo of what once was gaping pain
In flames and ashes, searing flashes
I remember — the rage, hurt, betrayal, fury
Locked, hidden away in those tidy stitches

How can it be all right, okay?
How can it all be gone?
I tear out the stitches, relish in the pain
Rejoice in the wracking sobs
I’d rather feel anguish than nothing at all
And, as they say,
Nobody ever died of a broken heart


This poem is temporarily called ‘Agony’ (mostly because I needed a post for A), but I really can’t decide on an appropriate title. What do you think? Is ‘Agony’ a good title? What do you think the title should accomplish? Do you have any suggestions? Comments, compliments, and critiques are more than welcome.


About Hammlington

Hammlington, the Ham of the blog, is the public face of the creature that is Me. Though Ham claims the title of All Powerful Blog Administrator and Supreme Ruler of Awesomeness (c), Hammlington's main responsibility lies as Potato Wrangler. The Blog:

8 responses »

  1. Sorry, I have to leave a reply — part of that whole ‘showing support for fellow A-Z bloggers’ thing. I do think “Agony” is a pretty good title for your poem, although I admit that I’m not good at coming up with titles even for my own work, much less anyone else’s.

    • Why are you apologizing for commenting? I love getting feedback! I do a little happy-dance in my computer chair every time someone leaves so much as a “hi i like ur stuff gud job lol”. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the title, per se, but I don’t feel like it adds anything to the poem, either.

      • I was just playing along with your “Don’t leave a reply” thing, not actually apologizing. :)

        Does it make you even MORE happy when the response you get is “Hi, I like your stuff. Good job!”? (I wish for you many fans and followers who use real words and competent punctuation instead of bad text-speak or whatever the kids are calling it these days.)

        I still think you should write about world domination — it’s such a fun topic. On the other hand, perhaps How to Read a Book is needed more.

      • Aaah, how scandalous, to not recognize a continuation of my own joke. I am ashamed. [insert mildly ashamed expression here]

        Yes! Well-written responses put me in such a state of ecstatic euphoria it brings a tear to my eye. I’m convinced grammar was given to man as a gift from the gods, if only to help persnickety fussbudgets (such as myself) find satisfaction in looking down their noses at the grammatically challenged.

        World domination, eh? Well, I may have to bow to the will of the masses (meaning the two votes on my lonely little poll). Maybe for my W post?

  2. I really liked your poem. I’m not sure on the title you should use. Agony seems to fit but like you I feel like there might be a better one. Also like you I don’t know what it would be. Good luck and keep writing!
    Shawn from Laughing at Life 2

    • Normally I find some title that just jumps out at me, but I’m struggling with this one. Hm. To lead into the beginning, it could have something to do with the medical field, maybe? Thanks for commenting!

  3. Nice post for day one. Agony might work but maybe in a week or so, or two days, you can look over it again and something better will pop up.

    A to Z commenter
    From the Reading at Dawn blog

    • Thank you! I actually submitted this poem to my writing group and got some interesting title ideas that I might test out once I’ve let this poem roll around in my mind for a while. What do you think of “Malpractice” or “Fluttering Thing”?


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