A poem, The lamp light beckons.

This is dedicated to a friend who suffers with this debiliating mental disease, plus she's obese.The disease is called Agorophobia. ( Fear of leaving your home

The lamp light in the darkened street

Beckons me

Should i leave my safe retreat?

A recluse i'm sometimes called

I often wonder what it's like

To walk with friends in brightly lit malls

You see I have this phobia, crowds scare me literally to death

It's not like I think of bodily harm

Or an unjustifiable act of theft

I avoid people 'cos they say unkind comments behind my back

Like, " Look at her, how very fat

Bet she can't buy clothing off the rack "

The only way to feel secure is to stay quietly in the confines of my home

Somedays I wish I could run outside, skip and dance

Let it all hang loose and roam baby roam

The lamp light is just across the highway, not too far away

Then I remember the hurtful words spoken, the spiteful laughter that cuts deeply

Then invariably I decide, "not today"

Maybe tomorrow I'll cross that elusive highway line

Maybe tomorrow I'll have friends

And have a really good time.


More by this Author


Comments 82 comments

Lucky Cats profile image

Lucky Cats 4 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

Hi Ruby. Oh, this is very sad. Being a prisoner inside one's own body...the hurtful and cruel things people say; like "piling on" when someone is down; kicking someone when they are down. We can be a cruel kind; particularly against our own. Why? I have no idea. I have always cheered for the under dog; for the one others laughed at and lorded over. To be otherwise is something I don't understand. the hurt inflicted on another' particularly when they are weakened, is tragic. You've described the thoughts of one in this position; I hope others will read and learn. Up Useful Awesome, Beautiful - because you've empathized w/the "victim," and loyal; because I think you are probably a loyal friend to the one about whom you've written. I really respect you for this.


A.A. Zavala profile image

A.A. Zavala 4 years ago from Texas

Such a sweet poem for someone who suffers with the shame of obesity. I understand how she must feel, afraid of the stares and jeers. You such a sweet person to think of her and write this. Loved it.


old albion profile image

old albion 4 years ago from Lancashire. England.

Hi Ruby. This is a lovely poem. Thought up by you and you alone. Your friend has a friend in you. I hope at sometime you are able to help her overcome this unfortunate condition.

Graham.


BeyondMax profile image

BeyondMax 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Ruby, this is such a tough stuff. Great compassionate poetry! Heartbreaking story, heartfelt poem, it is so sad how mean people can be cruel and suffocate another human being. It's a long process of healing, I hope your friend will get better some day and enjoy life like she should be doing it instead of being a prisoner in her own home!


myownlife profile image

myownlife 4 years ago from london

Awesome poem, get through with the obstacles and do it today, tomorrow never comes,

God bless


billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Great job Ruby and wonderful choice of music. What a terrible disease that would be, to not be able to go outside and enjoy life. You have done well with this!


shiningirisheyes profile image

shiningirisheyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

Ruby - Great job with this sensative and sad story. I have great sympathy for your friend yet how fortunate she is for having you in her life.

I feel her pain. ASlthough mine was brought on by too many difficulties much too close together, I, for some time experienced what this felt like.

I send my deepest of wishes that she finds the strength to break this. I despise cruel and heartless people who inflict such damage on others. Karma is a bitch.

Great write my friend.


sofs profile image

sofs 4 years ago

Oh Ruby.. this one tugs at my heart strings.. it is indeed sad to be unable to cross your own prison doors. ... mental prisons are far worse than physical ones... hope your friend is able to break free and fly like a bird to find those things she has missed all her life.


writer20 profile image

writer20 4 years ago from Southern Nevada

So sad, I hope you can encourage her to go for a walk where it's quite maybe a wooded if you have that by you.

Voted up, awesome and interesting, Joyce.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom

Oh Ruby this is very sad....

People can be cruel - she must be so grateful for your friendship, I hope she finds the strength and courage to overcome this.

Voted up.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 4 years ago from Canada

Aww, what a good friend you are to understand always. Nicely done, I wish this wasn't so. Voted up and awesome. Regards, snakeslane


acaetnna profile image

acaetnna 4 years ago from Guildford

Completely sad, yet a wonderful poem.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Kathy, It is very sad. Over eating is an addiction just like any other addiction, the problem, It shows. It is difficult for me to see a very obese person and i immediately think, " How could you let this happen," Then i remind myself that food is a terrible addiction. Thank you for a compassionate heart. Cheers my friend


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello old albion, All anyone can do is love and support her. She is seeking medical help. It will take some time before she can overcome some deep seeded problems. Thank you . I appreciate your kindness. Cheers my friend.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 4 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

This a beautiful heartfelt poem. The situation is so very sad. Your choice of songs fits so well. Thanks Always.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Dear Ruby, I understand how someone can get to this point. The picture you included of the face behind bars is hauntingly sad. I wonder if those that inflict cruelty that results in another shutting themselves away knew the devastating impact, would they continue? I believe some would feel responsibility and guilt, but I think some would feel powerful and some would deny accountability. Human beings can be very inhumane. It's why I preferred spending my time with my dog, who was pure and free of malice.

Beautifully written, Ruby, as I felt the loneliness, sadness and anguish of the victim. Your understanding, compassionate heart shines.


Lady_E profile image

Lady_E 4 years ago from London, UK

Mmmh... very touching. Society hasn't helped either as they judge people by weight. I hope you continue to keep in touch with her and one day she finds the inner strength to go out. If lots of people show her love, she will find the courage.

Hugs to her.


Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

Oh My.. I am crying for this friend of yours.. God Bless her.. I pray she will find love and acceptance and be able to over come her Phobia ... and God Bless you for writing this

Debbie


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Joyce, She refuses to leave the sanctuary of her home, maybe someday. Thank you for kindness expressed..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Max, It is a very sad situition. Like i previously stated, she must get the help she so despertely needs. I feel secure that she will. Thank you my friend..


Mhatter99 profile image

Mhatter99 4 years ago from San Francisco

This is a haunting song. I sense it contains an answer which alludes us.


Senoritaa profile image

Senoritaa 4 years ago

Your ability to decipher the psyche of your friend amazes me. I feel for her. Hope she finds her way across the highway soon.


Fennelseed profile image

Fennelseed 4 years ago from Australia

I hope also that help is not far away as this must just be an awful way to live each day. The great outdoors and sunshine that we take for granted is denied to your friend and that is too cruel. Your poem paints such a sad picture of this real situation. My wish is for your friend to confidently open the door and step into the sunshine very soon. Thank you for raising awareness of this condition. My votes and best wishes to you Ruby, from Annie.


Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 4 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

The internet must be a godsend for people like your poem describes. But nothing replaces the physical presence of others who love and accept who we are. You are a great and lovely friend Ruby.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Bill, Mental illness comes in all forms, never leaving your home is so sad. Thank you, glad you liked the music. Cheers..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Shiningirisheyes, We all deal with problems in different ways. I'm glad you came through your difficulty. I love your wit and poetry. I too detest people who are heartless and hurt others by cruel remarks. Thank you so much..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Sophie, Your comment about mental prisons being so much worse than physical ones is so true. I love the idea of her flying. Thank you my friend..


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

I did not know about Agorophobia. Your poem nicely describes the fear of leaving home.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Leslie, It takes time. So much hurt, then stuffing yourself with food, It's going to take awhile. Thank you for an understanding comment...Cheers.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Leslie, It takes time. So much hurt, then stuffing yourself with food, It's going to take awhile. Thank you for an understanding comment...Cheers.


Alwats exploring 4 years ago

Hello Verlie, I wish it were not true too, but it is what it is. Only time will tell. Thank you Dear friend. I appreciate your emails. Cheers..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello acaetnna, Thank you for your awesome comment. Thank you..Cheers my friend..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Thank you Mike, so glad you liked the song. Thank you for reading. Cheers my friend.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Amy and your comment is so true. Some would rather hurt than try to understand the debilitating disease. You have a good heart my friend,,Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Mhatter. This eludes me also, but unless we've been there we will never fully understand. Cheers my friend..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Debbie, Your prayer is mine. Thank you for a kind comment.. Cheers my friend..


unknown spy profile image

unknown spy 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

Hi Ruby,,this is very sad...i dont know anyone who's suffering from agoraphobia but it must be really dreadful.. i hope your friend is ok. God bless


Lord De Cross profile image

Lord De Cross 4 years ago

I close to home... a family member wouldn't go to work due to fear and all kind of internal issues. Is sad how the mind can make us prisioners of our own life. Powerful and engrossing!


Ruchira profile image

Ruchira 4 years ago from United States

sorry to hear about your friend, Ruby. I pray that she finds solace in this struggle.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Annie, How sad it is to not enjoy the beauty of summertime. This type of mental illness is growing, so I read. I believe her's started when she put on a lot of weight, hating her image, then hiding. My prayer is that she will get proper help, hold her head up high and walk into the sunshine as you so beautifully stated. Thank you so much..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Hyphen, Sometimes her depression keeps her from enjoying the computer. Thank you for kind words. When we can be a friend, we not only help them, we help ourselves too. Cheers my friend..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Vinaya, There are quite a few famous people who suffered with this condition, Paula Deen ( The famous cook ) Woody Allen ( Film Director ) and Sigmund Freud ( Phychiatrist ) Thank you for coming by my page...Cheers my friend..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello unknown Spy, It is dreadful, but people who seeks help can be helped. A good example, Paula Deen, she now has her own TV show. The key is to get help..Thank you..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Lord. I agree, the mind is so powerful and when something happens that is deeply hurtful, this is only one of the many mental illness that can occur. I hope your family member is getting help. Thank you for sharing..Cheers.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Ruchira, Thank you. Each day is a struggle for her, but hopefully she will find that solace. Cheers my friend..


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 4 years ago from West Virginia

Wow Ruby. I never knew such a thing. I love your heart though:) You have a beautiful soul AE. This is very nice and thoughtful of you, so I commend you of that first. Great job on the poem! Such emotion in every word, every line. When you put yourself in those shoes, you can feel the pain. It is sad. Just knowing that they can't leave the home, such a hard life to live. I hope, truly hope that one day she will overcome it and enjoy the world outside.


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 4 years ago from close to you...

Never knew about that kind of phobia. That must be so hard. This is a very heartfelt tribute. I hope your friend read this and realize bright stuff in her life


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Ricky, You are so kind with your generous comments, Thank you. I really think this is the worst kind on mental illness, It's going to take courage and treatment for her to overcome this disease. She misses so much, hopefully she will overcome and start to live a normal life..Cheers my friend.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello blaise, I'm sure she will read this, hopefully all the wonderful comments will brighten her day. Thank you so much..Cheers my friend.


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 4 years ago from Dallas, Texas

This poem was beautiful and deeply meaningful, Always. It reminds me of my husband's sister, whose name was Ruby. (!) She was a beautiful girl who let emotional issues pull her into the abyss of compulsive eating. She got to the point where she stopped working outside of the home (the comments from coworkers and people who saw her) she could longer drive and barely walk down the hall without getting out of breath. She hardly ever left the house despite having two teenage girls with all their activities. She passed away at the young age of 40 from a heart attack. She was the glue that held my husband's family together; the one to initiate holiday phone calls and remembered to call on everyone's birthday. It was a heartbreak to lose her.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Oh this is so sad, passing away at 40 due to obesity. It is difficult for me to comprehand. My hope for her is to realize the danger and listen to her Doctor. She has a love affair with food, which is delivered. She is on disability of course, thus going into rehab is possible, I think. Maybe a controlled environment is the key. Thank you so much for sharing your story. See you at the cafe...Cheers


b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 4 years ago

Wonderful Poem on a subject that needs to be discussed more. You did an Excellent service bring it to light... It Robs that person of so much. Very Poignant and so Heartfelt. Thanks for Sharing Ruby.


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

Dear friend, Ruby. This is very sad. But I hope she'll find the best and my pray for her. Thank you very much.

Love and peace, prasetio


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 4 years ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

Still seeing "unjustable" and "Let it all hang lose..." (both easily edited.)

Fine description of your friend's feelings and it could easily be added by a publisher to a text or two on the disorder. What is the normal therapy, and can a friend help with that, or does it hinge on professional counseling?


Rosemay50 profile image

Rosemay50 4 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

Ruby you did a great job here. These issues affect so many. Your friend is so lucky to have someone like you in her life. I hope she does find the strength and courage to move forward and begin to heal.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Prasetio, You are so kind. Thank you my friend...


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Perspycacious, Thank you for dropping by. A friend is indeed helpful, although it takes a specialist in the field of psychiatry to get to the root of the problem. Many people are so wrapped up in politics that they forget that poeple are suffering. I appreciare your visit..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Rosemary, I am so glad to see you. I know you have had a sad event in your life. I am so sorry. Thank you for words of encouragement. Cheers Dear friend...


IntegrityYes 4 years ago

That poem is extremely emotional.


BobbiRant profile image

BobbiRant 4 years ago from New York

Great poem and this affliction must be so hard to deal with. Thanks for bringing this real problem to light for us to understand better. Bless you. *hugs*


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Integrity Yes, Nice to meet you. Thank you for reading and leaving a kind comment..


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Bobbi, So good to see you. Thank you so much for coming.

* Hugs *


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

...my dear Ruby I am sure that George Jones could sing a sad song about your poetic story - and that is the thing I love about you and your writing the most - your ability to swing (like the epi-man) between sad stories and happy stories, deep stories and silly stories - it takes a very special and talented writer to pull it off - and that writer is you. You are a true force and I love you for it - there is no one like you and I am glad that we met - and everytime I leave here I go back home and put on some George Jones in your esteemed honor - lake erie time 10:43pm canada and sending you my good thoughts and good energy


michiganman567 profile image

michiganman567 4 years ago from Michigan

I hope that your friend gets out there and sees what the world has to offer. It is a shame to let the reactions of strangers rob an individual of so many experiences.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

This is a great hub, Ruby. The condition it helps to highlight is so real and actual. And it is so easy for a sceptical society to ridicule those who suffer from it. Well done for drawing attention to this and for adding your own spin to it also.


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

Sigmund Freud and Woody Allen suffered from Agorophobia, this information is new for me.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Aha Dear Epi, You put me on cloud nine with your wonderful accolades. I love sharing stories like this, hoping it will help her and possibly others. When you play a George Jones song, crank it up, i'll be listening in spirit. Thank you for coming My Dear Friend..* Hugs *


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Michiganman, I agree. Hopefully one day she will realize this. Some people can be cruel. My wish is that she can put on a coat of armor and start to live again.. Thank you for reading..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Astra, I see that you are aware of this disease. It is not rare, many suffer in different degrees, some can not leave home at all , others may go as far as the mailbox. It is so easy to look at someone and see obesity and feel bad for them, but to be cruel is unthinkable.. Thank you my friend..Cheers


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Vinaya, Yes they had this phobia. Along with them were Kim Basinger and Howard Hughes. It's difficult to understand about Hughes since he was a pilot, i think it happened to him in his late life. Thank's for your return visit..Cheers My Friend..


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 4 years ago from Minnesota

Ruby-I think it's so wonderful that your educating people on this painful phobia. Being agoraphobic is hard enough but I'm sure the obesity heightens her anxiety. We have something we struggle with and it's always good to remember that we are blessed and someone out there has it much worse. Beautifully written article my dear friend. My heart goes out to your friend.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Linda, Good to see you on my page. Yes, there are many different disabilities, this is a cruel one, but there is hope with proper treatment. It would even be difficult for her to enter a facility, we can only hope and pray for her desire to override her fears. Thank you for your kindness. Cheers my friend..


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 4 years ago from Minnesota

Ruby-You probably remember that I recently flew to New York because I won a trip to see John Mayer. Sis and I struggle with claustrophobia too and flying is very difficult for us. We were so excited about the trip that we forced ourselves to work through the fear. Perhaps there will be a day that your friend can take the first step. I can relate to her agoraphobia as this is part of claustrophobia. There was a time I was getting eeked out leaving the house but I eventually worked through it. There is Always hope and I will keep her in my thoughts.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Linda, I am afraid of height. I refuse to fly anymore, it's a type of phobia. I also panic in heavy traffic on the interstate. I think that's why i want to help her so much, and yes, there is always hope. Thank you for a touching comment...


Docmo profile image

Docmo 4 years ago from UK

Ruby you touch our hearts with this heartfelt tribute that so well explores the feelings and emotions of the one trapped in such a plight. Your words and imagery are stunning- the lamplight beckons is a haunting yet terrifyingly true image for many who are trapped in these medical conditions... your words are an anthem to them and for those trying to understand them. Bravo!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 4 years ago from Minnesota

Ruby-I also panic getting stuck in traffic. There was one day that rush hour was terrible because of a snow storm. When I looked down the highway ahead of me, it was hundreds of cars in front of me. I started having a panic attack and was ready to call 911 in my hysterical state. Of course, If I was stuck in traffic, calling 911 to come get me wouldn't have worked but that's a phobia for you. I think it's great we can all talk about our fears and phobia's here. What a great family we are at Hubpages.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Docmo, I am so sorry for not responding sooner. I didn't realize you had commented. It is difficult to understand how the mind can so completely control your life. Thank you so much for reading and leaving a heartfelt comment. Cheers my friend.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Linda, I'm afraid i missed your comment, so sorry. I am amazed that we both panic in traffic. There must be a reason. I've tried to think back in early childhood, but can't think of what it might be. I'm sure there was something that triggered this in both of us. I know we both were in environments that was not healthy. ( To say the least ) I agree with you about our community here at Hubpages. We all are close and able to open up and express our feelings without fear. Thank you my friend and God Bless..


raciniwa profile image

raciniwa 4 years ago from Naga City, Cebu

oh, that's so sad...what a grim way to spend the days...yet this poem is awesome...the light unto my path...


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello raciniwa, The mind can do all sorts of thinks when a person is suffering from an unknown cause. To unlock the mind is the key to happiness. Thank you Dear friend..Cheers


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 4 years ago from West Virginia

Your welcome Ruby. I sure hope she is able to overcome this. I couldn't imagine having to go through something like this. Your beautiful soul beckons with this poem AE. This was very thoughtful:) Best regards.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois Author

Hello Ricky, You are so kind..Thank you again. Your comments always brighten my day..Cheers my friend..

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    always exploring profile image

    Ruby Jean Fuller (always exploring)808 Followers
    162 Articles

    I am a writer of poetry and fiction. I especially love flash fiction. My name is Ruby, and I live in Southern Illinois. I am a retired R.N.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working