“Armageddon” – a video poem by James Laurie paralleling the destructive power of self-harm with the destructive power of an emerging nation.
I slice my forearm from the soft white part of the inside of my elbow down to my wrist
I feel the razor sliding sharply through my skin raising a bead of blood in its trailing wake
Warm, the red line lies juxtaposed against the white skin beneath
And somewhere in my fucked up mind chemicals bond to receptors and my cross-linked brain simultaneously registers a mixture of relief and ecstasy
I watch from a safe distance as I contemplate another stroke
Another slice from the soft white part of the inside of my elbow down to my wrist
Deeper and more assertive this time
In control of this life that is running out of control
Like the bison running wildly westwards across golden plains
Cutting swathes through the tall pale grasses of a disappearing nation
To escape the onslaught of the untempered power of a new nation
Foretelling a future in which the destructive power of all nations might destroy whole worlds and deny my very existence
Which I now contemplate destroying.
First published in A New Ulster Issue 37 7th October 2015