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Creative Poetry By Chato Stewart – Trigger WARNING

Trigger WARNING: Suicidal Intent and Imagery  – Trigger WARNING: Referencing topic on Self-Injury (Self-Harm) or Non-Suicidal Self-Injury (NSSI).  

The imagery of the following poems “could be” considered raw and somewhat dark. The poem titled “Distortion Of The Mind” was published in Natural Magazine and found its way into a poetry book. Much of my poetry is the snapshot in time through my mind, the chaos, fear, the self-hate, loathing.  Some poems end with just a glimmer of hope, other not so much.  But it my way of processing negative emotion and avoiding self-harm.

Distortion Of The Mind is a good poem that does take you into the mind of someone living with suicidal ideation and self- injury. BUT what I love is, unlike some of my other poems here, there is an underlining message of HOPE…even in all the chaos! Because the topic could be a trigger for some, I would recommend reading it when you’re in a “good” place and of “stable” mind!

The following poems were written instead of self-harming.

Why Self-Harm | Stop Self-HarmSelf-Harm PoemsSelf-Harm Poem 

Poem By Chato Stewart

Trigger WARNING: Suicidal Intent and Imagery – self-harm, blood, and death reference

 Edge of disaster

By: Chato Stewart             Tuesday, May 02, 2006

One life is full of edges, full of acceptable disaster, many we face over and over again.

Yet, at the edge of disaster lays no hope for those who have come before.

The same things are done

The same actions are taken and

The same results are found at the edge of disaster.

With one word most disaster can be avoided, bypassed, overlooked

Yet at the edge of disaster is where we stand, is where we go.

The same wounds are opened

The same blade is used

The same results are found at the edge of disaster

Overwhelmed by the mind of the impure, taunted by the want of evil, overlooked by the needs of the one.

Yet it is again and always here at the edge of disaster I am present

The same words are spoken

The same consequences unheeded

The same results are found at the edge of disaster

Being pushed to the edge goes without saying. It is easy for we who have camped here so long, until the blue moon passes and before you realize, yes before you can act you have crossed the edge of disaster and it’s devastating blow of disaster coming down on your barren neck like the assassins ax to sever your world.

The same results are seen

The same blood is spilled

The edge of disaster has called and you stood and stepped over the edge and now it is in disaster you are. Anarchy, Turmoil, chaos you embrace and life’s blood leaves you to die over the edge and into disaster.


Poem By Chato Stewart

Trigger WARNING: Suicidal Intent and Imagery – self-hate, anger, self-harm, blood, and death reference

Distortion Of The Mind

Chato B. Stewart 9-14-07

Distortion of the mind, off signal and mis-marked. I sit here with fear of nothing. Yet trembling to the very bone. Surrounded by love. Yet too distorted to recognize it. My own tongue whispering in my head of evil, vile and harmful words that shudders the foundation of my sanity. In the echoes I hear, “Let the street turn red with my soul! Avenge Me! Avenge Me!” Hate builds up and hate boils over, hate looks for its avenger. Hate of what? Hate of whom? Who do I avenge – Hate of Self!

Is it that unreasonable, that it is with so much love around me, I can still hate so deeply? Can everyone really be that blind to it. Is it that the distortion of my mind is taking hold of my heart to kill it off? There is true feelings of affection for those who want to help. Or, is it something evil in their gain?

Surrendering to the overwhelming power of hate, I loathe my being and lay the foundation to all that I believe to be me. I long to burn my hate, yes I desire the burning embers to press into my flesh to ward off the pain and the worthlessness. My scares speak volumes of past sorrows, shall I heat up the blade as I’ve done so often before? Yet I do not. It is a puzzle to me why my flesh bares no new scars. Is recovery on the horizon?

Troubled is my thoughts of now and long ago. Is my today going to be the same as days gone by… Do I live in my own pantomime as my silent thoughts complete a vicious circle to a path void of hope? Each rotation takes more of my sanity, more of my life. My own self-loathing has become my companion. My own self-hate is my trusted friend.

Outraged over my lack of balance, enraged at my own shortcomings. I lay in wait, my mind ready to act, my body ready to expire. My only question goes unanswered. At who’s hand will my death, my salvation come? My disquieting thoughts begin a plan and I feel acceptance to this want of my heart.

Raw are my words written, gushing with blood of my days. Lost is my purpose, distorted is my soul. The one truth is my own demise, the only constant is my own hate. Slashing out at my flesh, to ease my pain. Lost am I, in a world where I’m the obstacle yet translucent. Flesh and blood among you all, yet I am lifeless with no direction but one distortion.

Thunder bellows through my core, shaking my mind a right and straight, and for a few brief moments, clarity and sanity is captured. Nothing, no hate, no evil, no vile thoughts. Grab hold with a death grip, I hear echoes, I reach out for balance. 

It is then I remember whom I am. What I have that has kept me alive so long. In this one moment, my mind is free of DISTORTION. Brief though it may be, it will keep me as I wade through the storm of distortion bearing down on me. Fleeting, moving ever farther away I look up and around searching for the light and a way out.  There far away I see it, as a door to the outside world… I run picking up my pace as the inception of my world collapses inward.

Overcast is the clouds as the storm begins to rise up against me. I tell myself to hold strong as the wake envelopes me once again. My mind disconnects, distorted reasoning creeps in. The walls pressing ever so hard against my will and resolve. The burden once more extracts my hope.. Once more, I’m lost in my own mind.

Never ending the Distortion of my mind is, yet, always present is the glimmer of hope for recovery. My vision dims and struggling as I whip about to watch the glimmer of light fade as a door closing in the void…Through the darkness lays hope. In my cave of echoes, I hear, “Do not avenge, you’re almost there, hold strong” and I do!


Chato Stewart

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Originally Posted at Chato Stewart’s Mental Health Humor at Psych Central:

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Stewart, Chato. (2018). Poem. Psych Central. Retrieved on Oct 30, 2018, from





Creative Poetry By Chato Stewart – Trigger WARNING

Chato Stewart

Chato Stewart has a mission, to draw and use humor as a positive tool to live, to cope with the debilitating effects symptoms of mental illness. Chato Stewart is a Mental Health Hero and Advocate. Recovery Peer Specialist board-certified in Florida. Chato is the artist behind the cartoons series Mental Health Humor, Over-Medicated, and The Family Stew - seen here in his blog posts. The cartoons are drawn from his personal experience of living with bipolar disorder (and other labels). [email protected]

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APA Reference
Stewart, C. (2018). Creative Poetry By Chato Stewart – Trigger WARNING. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 6, 2020, from


Last updated: 31 Oct 2018
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