The Black Dog

Jamie Davis rode in the 2013 National 1 Day Ride on the Central Coast leg and says it was both moving and a lot of fun. He wrote this poem during a dark time in his life, hoping it may help others. Jamie's road, battling with depression and bipolar disorder, has been very long road but is going well now.

Winston Churchill famously diairised about having the 'black dog of depression' on his back, or following him around. It has been a popular phrase for several centuries to describe the darkness, the depth, the ferocity of depression. Jamie Davis uses it effectively here to express his journey with his own 'black dog'.

The Black Dog of depression

The Black Dog

A poem by Jamie Davis

Have you met the Black Dog?

Has he followed you late at night, in your dreams or in your mind?
He is cunning, and will lie in wait,
until he senses the time is right.

Then when you least expect it, he will pounce,
taking your freedom, your confidence, your courage.
Once he has you in his bite, he will control your life.
He will make you do things you never thought you could or should.

Those who have not met the Black Dog will not understand where you are,
or who you are, and they will not know where to find you, or your soul.
They will just see a different person, and won't know why.
They will still care, still love you, and try to understand you.

But you have the Black Dog, he is your new friend.
He holds the power, and gives you his strength,
but his strength will bleed you dry.

He will show you the way to your new life,
but this new life you cannot sustain,
In the end you will put out your hand for help,
and those that love you will release you from the Black Dog's bite.

But beware of the Black Dog, as he will always be there,
hiding and lurking somewhere.
You must respect the Black Dog, and be at the ready,
don't let him get you, don't let him win.

Now you hold the power, and you make the rules,
and, should that Black Dog cross your path,
you will know how to fight to redeem your life,
'cause that Black Dog is never as strong as the person he bites.

© Jamie Davis