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A Hoarder’s Cries for Help — in Haiku

By Christopher Lancette

PROMPT — If only ...


Anger deep inside

Disorder not understood —

Hoarding, you bastard


Your eyes, so much hate

Burning me to the ground, why?

You loved me once


It’s me, I’m in here

Buried beneath your contempt

Shame less, dig out more


Mountains of junk mail

Free stuff jumps on top the pile

Jail cell walls close in


Urine yellow silk

Rat corpse and shit, I want that —

Mother’s wedding dress


Metal dumpster clangs

Taking treasures you call trash

Why do you hate me?


Blood boiling, hope you die

Take my stuff, my soul, my life —

All the same to me


Disorder talking,

Demon does not speak for me

Pained that you can’t tell


Muscle memory

Blind paths connecting each room

But none to escape


Demon bites my tongue

I’ll die here if you don’t help

Can’t you hear my screams?


Christopher Lancette is a Silver Spring, Maryland-based writer focusing on nature and the environment. He also runs an estate liquidation company that helps clean out homes affected by hoarding. His work has appeared in some 50 publications ranging from A Thin Slice of Anxiety and Biography and Salon and the Washington Independent Review of Books. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Georgia. Follow him on X at @chrislancette.


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