Poetry From Amsterdam – Riley-Ann Holm

A glimpse into the collection

*trigger warning – depression, ptsd, mature subject matter*

Hi friends! R here 🙂

The week after my big incident, I spent a week in Amsterdam to get away and process what had happened (I had lived in Amsterdam for a while before and it is truly a safe place for me – where I feel most at rest and at peace). I had been told by the doctors who saw me immediately after my incident to keep a journal. This is some of what came out as I attempted to explain what was going on in my head – a somewhat random selection of some of the poems.

I intend on releasing the entire little poetry-like journal as a e-book or pdf that can be downloaded by donation to the society, with all proceeds going directly to helping survivors. I am working on getting it illustrated and will let you know when it’s ready!

Love, R

April 01, 2018. 9:42 AM (AMS Time) 

I don’t feel like I am truly, presently living;

Only observing:

Like I’m peering into the world externally as a ghost would.

Or, as God does, I suppose. 

Seeing all without being seen. 

My social worker at the hospital said to Journal, so…

here I am.

I don’t want to write

What happened

Not yet.

A man asked me for money on the street.

‘A euro short’ he said

I had many thoughts flood me:

A euro for drugs?…..

Drugs for you?….

….Or someone else?

A euro for sex?

A euro for weed? 


Vodka soda?

A body?




I cannot know which.

So, who am I 

To deprive him of a euro

When I have one in my pocket?

I gave him 1.25 

But I couldn’t smile

I am not

Going to let him

Take away

My mercy.

11 Things that are in fact real in this moment

  1. I feel like a f*ckup
  2. I smell gluten free bread and dark roast coffee
  3. I feel like i am the one who needs to fix me, because I feel like I f*cked up
  4. I want – i need to get myself on track (I feel like I am spiralling down a black hole and I need to make a 180 before it’s too late.)
  5. My whole body aches
  6. Everything looks and feels grey – Like I have the eyes of a dog
  7. I want to cry but I cannot
  8. I need a holiday more than anything
  9. I have a lot of tension in the back of my head
  10. I want to be angry but I cannot
  11. I taste smokey lukewarm coffee

Particles (I)

The passion i’ve held

For the entirety of my life

Has evaporated

My personality

My characteristics


And now

Float above me



I’m left empty

I can see it, but I cannot reach it

No passion left

No fuel to live

No life


*all texts written above belong to Riley-Ann Holm. Do not use without permission.*

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