Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Poetry » Health

E - Everyone

Sanity in a Bottle

by Vivian

Sanity in a Bottle

BY: Paradox (Vivian)

My mother took pills every day.

They were tiny powder capsules of sanity

In a small orange or white prescription bottle.

I hated them,

Every last one of them.

She had twelve for the mind,

And twelve for the body,

A straight overdose her doctor said was perfectly safe.

Half the time she never took them,

And she was my mother,

But the other half the time she was not.

Twelve little multi-colored pills for breakfast,

And twelve more for dinner

Depending on the day.

Some days were good,

They were slow.

Some days were fast,

She’d take more,

That was bad.

One night,

I awoke to screaming,

Her screaming.

And it was just like so many other nights.

Dad called 911 and an ambulance came,

She’d had a miscarriage,


She never would get that big family.

A week later when she came back home,

She took a pill,

Just one.

It was a new one,

Small and pink,

And she downed it with wine.

It was just me and her that night,

And all night she cried.

Not being able to stand it anymore I marched up to her room,

Went straight for the bathroom,

And took out every pill bottle for mental health from the cabinet.

Then I took the physical,

An afterthought really.

Opening them all,

I flushed the contents one by one.

Down goes depression,

Drowning anxiety,

Her suffering second personality.

At last when it was done,

Every empty bottle on the tiled floor,

I laughed.

All the old, awful bottles were gone.

But I had left one.

The new one,

The birth control.

Ten years later I held my sanity in a bottle

Just like her,

But for different reasons.

At least I know where to find it.

Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.

Is this a review?



User avatar
70 Reviews

Points: 2833
Reviews: 70

Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:54 am
thePoeToaster43 wrote a review...

Wow, thanks for that. Making me tear up and feel "EMOTIONS".

I love the way this was constructed. As if the words weren't enough, the structure pulled it all together.
Not really much to critique as far as I'm concerned.
A truly inspirational piece, filled with the kind of raw emotion that leaves you thinking. I know it may never truly be a healed wound for you... But none the less, I hope you can move past it all.
You're a talented person.

Good Luck To You.

Vivian says...


User avatar
58 Reviews

Points: 4569
Reviews: 58

Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:40 pm
View Likes
jessiethought wrote a review...

Whew. Definitely a heavy poem. Emotionally gripping. This poem made me catch my breath. I only have a few suggestions for this poem; it's very good.

Your grammar and spelling and punctuation are pretty good. I didn't spot many errors there. Other than that, there's not much nitpicking I can do. :)

They were tiny powder tasting capsules of sanity,
In a small orange or white prescription bottle.

These are sort of weak second and third lines. The phrase "powder tasting" doesn't describe pills very well to me... I mean, pills do taste like powder a bit, I guess, but "powder tasting" is somewhat awkward phrasing. Also, there should be no comma after "sanity."

It was a new,

A new... one? pill? I think there's a missing word there.

At least I know where to find it.

I'm not sure what you intended in this last line. Why does the narrator say this?

These are just a few questions or confusing bits I saw in the poem. Disregard my suggestions all you want! This is a really good poem. It hit hard and deep, the way good poetry is supposed to.

~ jessiethought ~

Vivian says...

Thank you.

User avatar
10 Reviews

Points: 304
Reviews: 10

Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:39 am
ThundahKnuckles wrote a review...

Wow. I can tell this was written straight from the mind and heart. This piece impacted me heavily. It was kind of like a knife, in a way. Short yet sharp. The single nitpick I have is the "One day Well, one night," seems unnecessary. Shortening it to just "One night" would keep it on point. Sidetracking like that took a little away from the blow of this knife-like writing. Overall, this piece was an honest surprise. Well thought out. 9/10

“If lightning is the anger of the gods, then the gods are concerned mostly about trees.”
— Lao Tzu