The Terror of Blindness

My eyes cry out in mortal anguish

Sight has seemingly abandoned me

Perhaps too many visions;

Too many captured horrors

Disguised as moments of history

Replicants of worldly icons

Now reliant on memories

How long shall I remain

Blindness the final switch

One forever followed with darkness,

A lifetime of slow decay

Unforgiving reality evident

The finality of a closing curtain

Followed by a heavy silence

Irreversible and permanent,

The great void stretches outward

Moments silently ticking away

While the fading edges close in;

Teasing provocatively, yet unwavering

Until nothing discernible remains

Synapses firing randomly

Searching for the missing colors,

Processes no longer relevant

Grey matter seeking, but struggling

Desperate to find that which was lost,

Instead, dim fields of black and grey

Cloudy vision and mental fright

Borderline panic; defeating logic

The terror of blindness sharpened

As all else fades into nothingness


Message From the Author

I’ve been one of those people who struggles with my vision for most of my life.  Most of the time, it’s a slight inconvenience that is easily fixed by one pair of glasses or another.  Yet, as I grow older, I’ve recognized that sight is probably the most important of our senses and that blindness would be a major challenge to deal with.  Likewise, blindness is a topic which really doesn’t have much appeal to writers, due to its inherent outcome.  To me, however, it is a very real possibility as my vision keeps getting worse as I age.

I often imagine what it would be like in the final days of having sight; knowing that blindness would be a permanent part of life should that happen.  This piece of poetry is the result of one of those visionary days, with a bit of poetic flair incorporated.  It’s dark and a bit depressing, but also a stark approach to a possible reality.

I’ve always been the type of writing who pushes the envelope on a myriad of topics, including trying out untested styles, different types of word formatting, and tackling subjects no one wants to deal with or even hear about.  This is one of those works and I encourage you to re-read it now that you have my strange perspective to anchor your thoughts to.  And for the record, I can still see – I wear thick glasses and have a pair for each occasion, but they don’t deter me.  Please don’t worry – but instead, try to put yourself in the frame of mind as a human being losing your sight – it will change how you feel about a lot of things and make you realize just how precious sight really is.

Additional Reading

Freezing to Death – Alone and Afraid

Seeking Nothing; But Granted Everything

Hardened By Life’s Unexpected Twists

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R J Schwartz

I write about everything and sometimes nothing at all. I'm fascinated by old things, rusty things, abandoned places, or anywhere that a secret might be unearthed. I'm passionate about history and many of my pieces are anchored in one concept of time or another. I've always been a writer, dating back to my youth, but the last decade has been a time of growth for me. I'm continually pushing the limitations of vocabulary, syntax, and descriptive phrasing.

3 thoughts on “The Terror of Blindness

  • October 27, 2019 at 10:20 AM

    Ralph – I agree with you that sight is the most important sense. I cannot even imagine the horror of losing (Until I read this piece) .. I have been hard of hearing my entire life. I have adapted, but losing one’s eyesight would be beyond belief.

  • October 29, 2019 at 10:47 PM

    To lose eyesight would be extremely difficult to deal with, yet many have done so and overcome the terror of the world of darkness, thus learning how to live differently. I believe one with a strong spiritual awareness would learn to deal with it much easier. I also believe a blind writer will find ways to continue with the writing skills necessary to produce great works – one being dictating or taping a piece for a friend or family member to publish. There is also the spiritual aspect where writing will come from a deeper, more soulful place. I appreciate this piece, Ralph, for I relate strongly to your thoughts because I have type 2 diabetes and the beginnings of cataracts. My strength is that I have faith in myself to work with whatever I am dealt with. Thank you for this great message and work.

  • November 2, 2019 at 12:40 PM

    Powerful emotions in this poem. I felt as if I was journeying into blindness with the narrator. Well done. Jamie


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