Nightmare on Humanity Street

A Halloween reflection on stigma...

In this series, Scariest in Psychiatry, we asked clinicians about the scariest topic in mental health. What’s frightening, worrisome, or concerning in psychiatry? Here’s how they answered.

The witches’ brew

Filled with stigma

That smother the once

Empathetic hearts


Spooked is the

Homeless haggard

Soul

That leans on the corner of

The revered

Humanity Street

Whilst

The bystander scoffs

At the apparition of

His

Brother

Sister

Mother

Father

Son

Daughter…


REM centers

Activated and

Charred like charcoal

The moon howls

With an encouraging

witch silhouette


A nightmare on

Humanity Street

Satire gestures to

The frail skeleton of

Reality

And witches’ cackle

Sever the bones of

Morality


Brew saliva drips

from destitute

Soul

Urine and feces

Play on each other’s

Feelings

Brown and yellow soak

The leper’s remains


The Grim Reaper

Puzzled and mourning

Stigma’s eerie odor

Dr Clark is an outpatient psychiatrist at Prisma Health-Upstate and clinical associate professor at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Greenville. He served on the American Psychiatric Association’s Task Force to Address Structural Racism Throughout Psychiatry, and he currently serves as the Diversity and Inclusion section editor and advisory board member for Psychiatric Times™.