When Fear Attacks

Fear Attacks

Fear Attacks



without warning.

A heaviness drops to the stomach.

A constriction tightens the throat.

A sense of doom, dread, worry consumes,

and echoes throughout my limbs,

whispering lies in my mind.

You will fail. It says.

You can’t. It says.

Who do you think you are? It says.


When fear attacks—

It’s best to approach it gently,

but answer it back right away-

Lest it fester

producing stinging tears

that drown away my smile.

The muscles in the corners of my lips

must be strong.

A smile is my sword,

to slice through the draining energy

engulfing me in wet cement.

A fake smile is better than none.

An imaginary sword

is enough

to fight imaginary truths.


Fake it til you make it. I repeat

over and over and over again,

willing the sore muscles aching in my cheeks

to keep holding up

my sword.


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