Journey to the Dustbin - Kath Arnold

InterAction, Action for ME's excellent magazine, runs regular poetry competitions. (For more information call 0845 123 2314 or check

A recent winner was Kath Arnold's 'Journey to the Dustbin'. We thought it would strike a chord with many of our readers.

The damp night air savages my senses
Skin raised as hackles
Pin-pricks of cold piercing my face
My legs move like stilts beneath me
Body jerking in spitfire spasms
As bone hits stone.
Muscles weak, too weak to move
Wet street pervades my being;
Try to connect thought to limb
Electricity power-cut within
From addled brain no flowers grow
Seeds of stunted thoughts sow
Exhaustion seeps stealthily; a virus in my soul
To get back inside an unattainable goal.
Out of stillness sounds float into consciousness
Dim shapes pass by the fog in my mind
Strong arms lift me to my feet
‘'You alright love?' a voice asks
I wait for my words; a service delayed
Sorry for any inconvenience;
This person is temporarily out of order
Please try later.
The arms gently carry me to the wall
I feel the cool wetness in my clothes
I remember to breathe; hear a wheeze
‘'Dustbin' I point
‘'I came to put the rubbish out'.


Click here for more articles


Back to top