A response to the Hearing Voices Simulation

Evil or innocent,
can’t tell yet.
Coughing or laughing
These haunted residents.

My eyes blink heavy,
with this new energy
People all around me.
In the waiting room, waiting.

I feel calm for a second,
They are laughing, growling,
and I sit here waiting, wondering
what’s next, when will they stop?

This section of my frontal cortex,
She says I lead the way.
She says I am the one,
She say’s I’ll be fine,
She comforts me.

Eases this new confusion
She says I am chosen.
Everyone reading, outdated magazines
in this waiting room,
and all I hear is laughing, chaotic
voices in stereo.

Those voices, they were new to me.
But I took the headphones off,
And they remain only memories.

They don’t stay with me,
Like the end of a bad movie.
or the crag of a cliff,
obtrusive, protruding.
When I took my headphones off, the voices stopped.
But some the laugh track keeps skipping
And some the static never stops,
But me, I was just a witness,
I could turn the voices off.


Jason Wright is the editor and founder of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.