Modern Society – May 2020

Catherine Heath

May 2020

In modern society,


And faith

Are now grounds for incarceration.

When you yearn,

And fight,

And love––

It’s Borderline Personality Disorder.

When you’re strong,



People call you a narcissist.

When you love the opposite sex,

And don’t apologise,

Or care,

You’re now called a bigot,

Ruining society 

For everyone else.

When society grinds you down

(Violence and hate at every turn),

A simmering rage,

And vengeance, grows––

Antisocial personality, they whisper.

(People simply do not understand!)

If you see visions

Of heaven,

And God’s voice moves

In you,

It means you’re having a psychosis––

We drug you,

And tie you down 

(A danger to others)––

But he will protect you.

When you chase women,

Entranced by their beauty,

Trying to win hearts,

You’re now at risk

Of being hashtagged


When your mind leaves your body


Pain, and panic,

Far too much to bear),

It’s the worst one of all––


And must be medicated

At all costs.

When you leave the mental health system,

They send you surveys about “stigma”,

Which you refuse to complete

On the grounds that

It’s a vanity project

For arrogant academics

(But no one listens).

What shall we do?

I say,




Say goodbye––

(But don’t tell anyone)

And always

Surround yourself with lunatics.

We tolerate drugs,

And booze,

And violence

(Shaking our heads sadly),

But if someone shows signs of ecstasy,

We  want to lock them up.

What kind of world do we live in

When people cry at leaving the office?

Missing the suits,


Bare fluorescent lights,

And endless cups of tea.

They abhor the grass,

The sun,

The gentle touch of a hand,

In favour of endless games

To reach an end

Which does not exist.

People run,

And run,

And run,

Running in groups,

Or running alone,

But I walk,

And observe––

The gentle beauty of the world 

Is obvious to me.

We are afraid of ourselves;

Of each other;

Of finding out

We are less than we ought to be.

And so we rage on twitter;

Bleat on Instagram;

And sadly avoid Facebook,

For the past hurts far too much.

(She belongs in the nuthouse,

They said),

But why are people drawn to me,

Like fishes gasping

For the sea?

Am I a manipulative witch?

Or are people crying out

For love?

To connect?

To truly be seen?

I cannot answer these questions.

I can only


And laugh,

And love. 

Call the doctor!

Call the police––

But whatever you do,

Don’t call me.

Credit: Photo by Yaoqi LAI on Unsplash