David Fleming
It's All Academic   www.davidflemingsite.com   
Imposter Stockholm Syndrome

April 25, 2019

Bits and pieces of this have been coming to me for several days at all times of day and night and from different contexts.  In the end, it reads a little too close to the bone, but I can live with that.

Imposter Stockholm Syndrome

The carpet's worn thin by the trail

Of all you coming in.

Threads come undone, the fabric's

Color has run,

And the dirt is ground deep

Where everyone pulled up short.


I don't mind that I represent you

Through all of the drama that you attract.

I don't mind that when I am alone,

I am a gelatinous anxiety attack.

I don't mind this queasy feeling

That I don't belong and yet I do.

I don't mind that in my mind

I am forever chained to you.


The list of demands exhaust

The power I command.

Petty gripes and paranoid fantasies

Embody all the swipes,

And the dirt is shoveled higher

While everyone pulls up short.


I can survive as long as I

Can fit in and get out.

I can survive the interrogation

As long as I show no doubt.

I can survive to shed this skin

At the first sign of escape,

Or is survival just a delusion

I have decided to embrace?


The expectations pile up high

As I man the turnstile.

Favor here, ear there, support

I am meant to bear,

Set the trap I willingly trip

Coming up too short to close the gap.


I can do this (who am I kidding),

I love you all to death.

I can do this (do your bidding),

Right to my final breath.

I can do this because I understand,

The reasons for your actions.

I can do this sleight of hand

To somebody's satisfaction.

. . . But maybe not mine.