Some Choose Suicide

Vincent Van Gogh Old Man in Sorrow (May 1890)
Vincent Van Gogh
Old Man in Sorrow
(May 1890)

Cast down beneath a waterfall of sorrow
Begging to know if there will be a tomorrow
While sinking into a morass of self-doubt
Unable to see if there’s a possible way out.

The voices one hears have so many sharp edges
Some driven right down to jump of high ledges
While ghouls stand around to share an excitement
Victims themselves, their lack of enlightenment.

The last-minute thoughts of where life was breached
A finality of purpose is sadly now reached
One step and it ends and the pain goes away
There’ll be no more living and no more next day.

What causes some people to end things this way
That last final action that takes all away
Perhaps it’s our failure, we’re not watching out
We get wrapped up in our life and don’t hear their shout.

There isn’t a person whose life ends this way
Who’s not shown the signs of unhappiness’ sway
But we’re blind to their problems, we don’t want to know
As blithely we miss all the pain that they show.

It’s only much later when it’s far far too late
When notices come with a church service date
That we express surprise and say ‘course we will come’
But the signs were all there, we were just far too dumb.

©Joe Wilson – Some Choose Suicide 2014

5 thoughts on “Some Choose Suicide

      1. Sorry I couldn’t say in private. 3rd paragraph I think, the assumption one could prevent, just not so, as all too many suicides lie, Prove all is ok when worries/anxieties cause questioning. Hindsight helps put 2n2 together but too often we can’t help or stop, because like your title They have chosen. I really liked your piece, but had too say as the repercussions are heavy enough. Hope you don’t mind.

  1. I don’t mind your comments at all, I can see it means something and I’m glad you gave me your views. I think it is maybe the 4th and 5th verses that you refer to.
    I was very ill in 1986 when I was 37. I had a subarachnoid haemorrhage that had to be immediately operated on. It cost me my career as my driving licence was taken off me for over two years and I was an industrial salesman needing to drive. In the event I was unable to work or even think straight for a year and a half and I had constant painful headaches for the next twenty odd years. When I finally went back to work in 1989, it was even then too soon, I had a heart attack followed by 5 years of angina that woke me up every single night until finally I was operated on again. I was very depressed for about 20 years. I refused more medication as that just made things worse. People did care for me, very much so. My wife, my children, and also my GP, plus surgeons of course, saved my life. Without them I would not be here today. My decision to commit suicide though was instant, I was in so much pain, I didn’t really know what I was doing and I had been taken into town for a change of scenery having not left the house for a year. Nobody missed the signs…or did they? The fact is I don’t know. I was all set to step in front of a train at my local railway station when a hand was placed on my arm and someone said “I don’t think you want to do that.” It was the voice of an old man, but when I turned all I saw was a crowd of people. Who he was I have no idea. Was it God, was it just, ‘an old man’? Don’t ask, I don’t know. The moment passed and I walked home and I’ve never had that thought since and over the next year my depression gradually disappeared. As I was not expected to reach my 38th and next week is my 65th I am very happy indeed.
    I hope my answer isn’t too long-winded, but I felt I wanted to let you know why I’d written it. There are of course no easy answers and we are all different in our responses to pain, love and attention, which we sometimes see as helpful, but also sometimes as interfering. Our brains are so complex, and hence our characters are too.
    I hope my poem didn’t upset you in any way, it was my take on a very personal issue, but put at arm’s length if you will. If it did I am deeply ashamed and I apologise. That is never my intention. ❤

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