The Loudest Silence

The bathroom door enclosing me is broken,

Whimpering.

Memories of its collapse

Leave paint-chipped sores to growl;

Hissing hinges and lacklustre locks

Keep me inside.


The shower screens containing me are broken,

Smacking.

Magnetic closures squint,

Perverting the filmy plastic to warp;

Wincing wheels and simmering steam

Keep room dry.


The shower cleansing me is broken,

Gossiping.

Drops trace down my hair,

Curling around my calves to disperse;

Echoing secrets that wash away

Keep me hidden.


The drain is broken,

Choking.

Crumbling fragments crawl and lodge my pipes,

Gargling every water fall to swallow;

Soaking skin and drowning debris

Keep me quiet.


The rain hasn't spoken today.

They sing like a choir,

Conducted by a thrumming crowd

Of solitary heartbeats.

Rumbling permeates and billows

Within my walls;

Keep ringing — I’m disconnecting...


Rain used to speak to me.

They sang lullabies,

Lulling my worn mind

Out of its throbbing fog.

Gently knocking my walls they whispered

“I know you’re alone.”

Keep ringing — I’m disconnecting...


The light above me is broken,

The light inside is weeping.

The loudest silence

In a voiceless room.



February 2020 was the last time Hannah Govan saw her family before the increasing spread of Covid-19. ‘The Loudest Silence’ is a poem about the sounds and silence of self-isolation during a global health crisis. A structured stream of consciousness identifying broken noises, voicelessness, and the way physical and mental spaces resonate together.

In a physically, emotionally and mentally turbulent time of our lives, the contradictions of being on your own can speak louder than you realise.

When you're simultaneously deprived yet frightened of company.

When your numb silence is drowned out by daily activity in hollow spaces.

When the dull stillness of a home is the only thing that can hear every pained sound of trying to remain whole.


If you are in need of someone to talk to, here are some resources and helplines:


AUSTRALIA

Lifeline

  • 13 11 14

Beyond Blue

  • 1300 22 4636

Suicide callback service

  • 1300 659 467

The MindSpot Clinic

  • 1800 61 44 34

Kids Helpline

  • 1800 55 1800

Headspace


INDIA

Fortis Exam Helpline

  • +918376804102

The Fortis National Helpline [for students or parents]

iCALL

  • 022-25521111 / icall@tiss.edu

PARIVARTHAN Counselling, Training and Research Centre

  • +91 7676602602

Sumaitri

  • 011-23389090

  • eelingsuicidal@sumaitri.net

AASRA

  • 91-9820466726

  • aasrahelpline@yahoo.com

Sneha

  • 044-24640050 (24 hours)

  • 044-24640060 (8am-10pm)

  • help@snehaindia.org

Lifeline

  • +913340447437 / +91 908803030

  • contact@lifelinefoundation.in

COOJ Mental Health Foundation

  • 0832-2252525

  • youmatterbycooj@gmail.com

Vandrevala Foundation

  • 1860-266-2345

  • help@vandrevalafoundation.com

Roshni

  • +9140 - 6620 2000 / 6620 2001 / +914066202000

  • roshnihelp@gmail.com

Connecting...NGO

  • 9922004305 / 9922001122

  • distressmailsconnecting@gmail.com

Samaritans Mumbai

  • +91 84229 84528 / +91 84229 84529 / +84229 84530

  • talk2samaritans@gmail.com


INDONESIA

Alliance of psychologists hotline service SEJIWA 119 text 8

IRELAND

Connect counselling

Samaritans

  • 116123


JAPAN

Tell Lifeline


MALAYSIA

Befrienders

AIA


NEW ZEALAND

17.37.org

  • 1737 (call or text)

Lifeline

  • 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE)

  • free text 4357 (HELP)

Suicide Crisis Helpline

  • 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO)

Healthline

  • 0800 611 116

Samaritans

  • 0800 726 666

Depression Helpline

  • 0800 111 757free text 4202

www.depression.org.nz

SPARX.org.nz

OUTLine NZ

  • 0800 688 5463 (OUTLINE)

Youthline

  • 0800 376 633

  • free text 234

  • talk@youthline.co.nz

Thelowdown.co.nz

What's Up

  • 0800 942 8787 (for 5–18 year olds)

Kidsline

  • 0800 54 37 54 (0800 kidsline)

Skylight

  • 0800 299 100

Are You OK

  • 0800 456 450

Seniorline

  • 0800 725 463

0508MUSICHELP

  • 0508 MUSICHELP

Shine

  • 0508 744 633

Women's Refuge Crisisline

  • 0800 733 843 (0800 REFUGE)

Shakti Crisis Line

  • 0800 742 584

Rape Crisis

  • 0800 883 300


NIGERIA

Mentally Aware Nigeria Initiative (MANI)

  • 0809111MANI(6264)


PHILIPPINES

#ThereisHelp at National Centre for Mental Health Crisis hotline

  • 1553 (+63) 917-899-8727 / (02) 7-989-8727


SINGAPORE

https://www.healthhub.sg/a-z/support-groups-and-others/20/call-on-these-when-you-need-help

https://www.ncss.gov.sg/NCSS/media/NCSS-Documents-and-Forms/NCSS%20Internal%20Documents/Directory-on-Mental-Health-Services.pdf


SOUTH AFRICA

South Africa Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG)

  • Suicide Crisis Helpline 0800 567 567

  • 24hr Substance Abuse Helpline 0800 12 13 14

  • Mental Health Helplines 0800 456 789 / 0800 21 22 23

UNITED KINGDOM

Mind

  • 0300 123 3393 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm)

Samaritans

  • 116 123


USA

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) hotline

  • 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or info@nami.org

Crisis Text Line

  • Text NAMI to 741-741

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

  • Call 800-273-TALK (8255)



Source:

Unitedgmh.org. 2021. Mental Health Support. [online] Available at: https://unitedgmh.org/mental-health-support [Accessed 15 March 2021].

Cnusd.k12.ca.us. n.d. Mental Health Resources. [online] Available at: https://www.cnusd.k12.ca.us/our_departments/instructional_support/student_services/mental_health_resources [Accessed 24 March 2021].


Cover Photo Source: ITIJ