#SAVE 2020 | ELLA CHIKEZIE

How To Write Depression 

There are names housed by bodies which feel unfamiliar like mine, which hold questions without answers 

Sometimes I wander off this body lost child in city of cement and iron following the flare from a cannon towards the burning landscape 

How do i escape these thoughts bullets to my head which pierce the skin of calm drawing blood? 

How do you form the tongue swollen as cold mutton to spell depression?

Here’s how… 

One.

You are asleep in your bed voices in your head lie alongside asking you to fall off it is just a dream.

Two.

Friends visit on Tuesday and you are cracking jokes they fall like glass, splintering into laughter, for deep within you know you’re alone laughter is pieces of grief too.  

Three.

Three bullets loaded in a gun. You are choking on your own tears Just a pull of the trigger and you’d be better off gone.

Four.

Shit! Your heart is too heavy for pain. Maybe you’d pour yourself a drink and watch the pain float away but pain are icicles of tears. Frozen on your cheeks again. 

Five.

Five bottles of whiskey. If only they could whisk away the pain but you’re drowning in each bottle there is fire in your belly, in eyes but everyone is breathing well. They hold their fires better.

Six.

Six messages from your sister calling to say hello but all you mutter is goodbye and the text: “I’m fine” unsolicited.

Seven.

Seven packs of pills emptied on your palm If only your body would lie still like these pills.

Eight.

Eight sessions later and the only voice you hear is your therapist’s, saying: “I suffer from depression too. You are not alone.”  

– ELLA CHIKEZIE

About Ella Chikezie

Ella Chikezie is a new generation award-winning poet, screenwriter, copywriter, animator and filmmaker. She believes in the dynamic power of visual storytelling and was shortlisted for Access bank’s accelerate filmmaker’s project and the African International Film Festival (AFRIFF) screenwriting program in 2019. In January 2020, she was also one of the beneficiaries for Ladima Foundation and DW Akademie (Germany) Women in Animation program. Ella hopes to inspire change and unite people within Africa and across the globe by re-telling the African narrative and is very passionate about creating world-class movies and animation films.