Code 296.40*

I would be a horrible drug addict. Different generations decipher what our eyes say. I avert mine every couple of minutes so you don’t think I’m staring. You’ve become my father figure. You give me pills I swallow like insects. We wait to see what happens. I become 5 digits and a period, a code from your thick book of horror. I’m the ironic feather, white and unknowing. I become the unsatisfied one stretching my mind like a balloon. Life falls flat as the helium escapes fast as a runner around a midnight track. It could all be nothing or it could be the elephant in the room. I push that animal around, make sure he’s doing his job.
*Bipolar I DO: Most Recent Episode, Manic: 296.40—Hypomanic (DSM-5)

Sarah Lilius currently lives in Arlington, VA with her husband and two sons. She is a poet and an assistant editor for ELJ Publications. Some of her publication credits include the Denver Quarterly, Court Green, BlazeVOX, Bluestem, and The Lake. She is also the author of the chapbook What Becomes Within (ELJ Publications 2014). Her website is