The shadow - Joel vs Arthritis
Creative Writing

The shadow

I spent around fifteen years of my life playing in bands. From amateur high school outfits to touring the country recording full-length albums.

I stopped when I was in my mid-twenties. It was mostly due to lack of energy; trying to hold down an ever-demanding career whilst jumping in a van on a Friday afternoon and hoping you were back in time for work on a Monday morning. It also felt like the right time. I’ve never been one for fading out.

At the same time as this decision, I was also dealing with some health challenges – the onset of psoriatic arthritis on top of my juvenile arthritis. I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t a significant contributing factor in my decision.

Occasionally, the desire to write songs still comes around. Usually with the right amount of pain, desperation and emotion with whatever is going on in my life. I’ve long since stopped playing the guitar. I still can but I find the experience rather frustrating. When the fingers don’t move as quickly as you would like them to. Sometimes, it’s best to shut that guitar case and with it, a reminder of something else that you lost.

I wrote this one this morning on my dog walk. Apologies, for it’s quite dark. It’s not a cry for help. It’s not for sympathy. It’s an account of a situation. An outlet. ‘Awareness Art’. Perhaps I’ll perform it for you one day.


I hate the person I become
When pain arrives, my setting sun

The lights go out on my soul
When the shadow seeps into every hole

Been trying to erase you since I was ten
But I was so much stronger then

Time leaves scars on top of scars
What’s left beneath these chains and bars?

I’ve got enough toxins here to end it all
But I’m trapped between fear and walls

The shadow it hangs over me
Does anyone see what’s underneath?

So angry with always being angry
So tired of feeling old
I hate the person I’ve become
Forever miserable and cold


I sit and cry alone in the bath
Nobody sees all the footsteps on this path

It’s a journey I must take on my own
For only chapters, others come and go

The pages of my book are stained and torn
Possibilities crossed out for a life I now mourn

Stop and think of what I could’ve been
But instead fell through the spaces in between

I’ve got enough reasons here to end it all
But I’m stuck between my baby’s daddy calls

The shadow it hangs over me
Does anyone see what’s underneath?

So angry with always being angry
So tired of feeling old
I hate the person I’ve become
Forever miserable and cold


I hate the person I’ve become

One Comment

  1. I get it. I understand!!

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