Yesterday, I cried in the street.
The Beatles – Yesterday
Suddenly, I’m not half the man I used to be.
There’s a shadow hanging over me.
Oh, yesterday came suddenly.
Why she had to go,
I don’t know,
She wouldn’t say.
I said something wrong,
Now I long
I was overcome with grief for my mum, and I couldn’t stand it. I am a 36-year-old man in the prime of his life, and I miss my mum. I am a 36-year-old man and I cried in the street because I wanted my mummy. Tosser.
I miss most of all that she missed me when I wasn’t there. That she needed me. That she cared. That I mattered to someone.
I walked along the road, crying, and there was no-one to see, or to ask me how I was, or to care. And I came home to my flat, and I cried again, and there was no-one to see, or to ask me how I was, or to care.
I can cope with the isolation. I can cope with the fear. I can cope with looking over my shoulder all the time for the thing that is never there, but is always almost there. I can cope with the loneliness. I can cope with the despair. But the not mattering, the fact that if I disappeared tomorrow there would be no-one to notice, or to care – that I don’t know I can cope with.
This is my fault. It was my choice. I chose to isolate myself. I chose to stop seeing my friends. I chose not to take the drugs. I chose all of this. There is no one to blame. This is me. This is my fault.
I am trying to be strong. It’s what I do. Head-down, gritty-jawed, flint-eyed determination. But why do I bother when there is nothing left, and no-one to be strong for?
REM – Leave
I suffer dreams of a world gone mad,
And I like it like that, and I know it.
But I know it well, ugly and sweet,
And temper madness with an even-in streak.
That what keeps me,
That’s what keeps me,
That’s what keeps me down.
I want to start drinking again. I want the sight, smell, taste, feel – everything – again. I have denied myself this for so long, because it makes me worse. But why should it matter if I get worse? Why do I fight to stay normal, when there is no-one and nothing to be normal for?
I am 36 years old, and I have achieved nothing. A string of lost jobs, of failed relationships, of dreams for the future that failed to happen. I am the ghost of my past, haunting my own future. I will never have a future because I am permanently stuck in my past.
Chumbawamba – Pass It Along
A happy future is a thing of the past,
And there’s always another repeat.
Shut out the world, it’s getting worse,
Save yourself, don’t leave the house.
But then again, there is a way out. Always the same idea of the same way out, the old stupid, sweet, seductive escape.
REM – Try Not to Breathe
I will try not to breathe,
I can hold my head still, with my hands at my knees.
These eyes are the eyes of the old,
Shivering and cold.
I will try not to breathe.
This decision is mine, I have lived a full life –
But that’s the thing about trying not to breathe. It doesn’t work. Always in the end the breath comes. The body wants to live, and there is no simple escape from life. If there was an easy route into oblivion I would take it like a shot, I would jump at the chance, I would cut to the chase, I would swallow it hook, line and sinker.
But there isn’t. Between the thought and the expression falls the shadow.
So. This is what is left.