The soul-snatcher glared at me from the dusty street corner with fiery orange eyes, his hands cupped over his mouth because of the early morning cold.
I had been out late that night, and I was returning home a little tipsy.
“Hello there,” he said. “Looking for your fix?”
Here we are, nearly four months into the pandemic. The whole thing has been a very strange experience, for all us. It’s been a shared experience across the planet, though some countries have managed it better than others. I’m learning that the ability to adapt is so important.
Addiction is like an old record skipping,
caught in a permanent loop,
but you can’t stop the needle,
because you’re handcuffed to the radiator
and your hand is sore and bleeding from
trying to break free –
so you keep pulling until you realize
you can only accept the skipping sound
and once you do that, it’s like
you don’t even hear it.
(Photo by Steve Harvey on Unsplash)
This gothic cathedral was once a spiritual home.
Priests dabbed foreheads with holy water and
incense wafted to high ceilings and
parishioners chewed on wafers and said:
“Peace be with you.”
During the years I’ve been in recovery, I’ve learned alternative definitions to many common words. Take “pride” for example. In most cases, it’s deemed good to be proud of one’s self. In recovery and religious terms, though, pride is seen as one of the biggest sins or “character defects.”
Rachel has told me many times before of her struggles with anxiety. When I listened to her, I used to not be able to understand it. I’ve always thought of myself as a fairly calm person, and I can remember many moments from over the past several years where I’ve felt very peaceful.
I only wanted love from you, but loving you was pain –
the laughter one day, followed by grief and terror
from whatever state you happened to be in.
I ask myself, “Who were you?”
You discarded me like an object and
closed off that side of yourself
that seemed to contain the Devil.
Why come out of your cage
when it’s so cozy in here?
Don’t emphasize the warring world:
it will never change.
Sit in solitude – no one can reach you here.
She glowed in the sticky street,
cigarette hanging from ruby-red lips.
I wandered among musicians, drunks,
strip clubs and bachelorettes in sparkled masks.
Death has come knocking,
quietly at first and now with a shout
that rattles the planet –
My instincts are conflicted: for so long,
I have craved oblivion, but now that it’s here
there’s a fear that plays with the chemicals
in my broken brain.