Witness Post: Anxiety Attack 
In the new age of anxiety
The tranquilizers of the psyche hiss and buzz
Demons and docs encourage us to pop those pills and swig the shooters
Sanity has been hijacked by spent nerves and failed counseling
“My therapist sez…”
Frazzled and frayed feelings are splayed on the cracked sidewalks.
Financial Markets have panicked and recessed and depressed
So, also, does the human spirit.
Loneliness and stress kill
They eat away at our souls
Especially in families in inner Portland
And Springfield with homes, fretting about foreclosures
And strong lumber unions mired in misery and dismay.
The age of American-itis rules
With prozac and xanax on tap.
There is no rush to optimism
In this age of make America isolated again
No clamor for clarity and charisma
Only the faint echo of Freud and Maslow
Driving despair in search of deeper social needs.
But we cannot hear about them now.
Our tolerance too thin
The deafening sound of the siren
Tied to the mast of oblivion
Tied to anxiety, procrastination and fear.
Americans are neurotic, psychotic, Lunesta-fed, and asleep.
What will force the attention off of ourselves
And on to vital matters?
What will shake us from our lethargy, our opioids, our weed?
Perhaps it will take an explosion outside our heads
An attack on our values.
Have we not felt it already?
Do we need something bigger
To shock the system and draw us to a cause
Greater than our current self-centered pain?
The grains of sand flow at their own pace on matters like this
No matter how anxious we may be.
 This poem was inspired and informed by an article in the New York Times Magazine by Nitsuh Abebe, entitled Panic Attack, April 23, 2017.