Tuesday, April 3, 2018


It was a mundane enough place for a miracle
to occur. Doctor's office maybe, but maybe
it wasn't there at all. It could even have been
talking to my therapist. What I mean to say
is that it was a Wednesday, nothing special

about it, just the end of a long, useless battle
with myself. Addiction was still killing me
awake every morning & I couldn't remember
what consent even was, but it must be a lot
like self-respect:  a mythical, hypothetical

thing I had traded long ago for a few hours
of feeling like someone else. Anyone normal.
My addiction and I were a winning team, if
by winning, you mean, on the couch, unable
to move, or uninterested. "This is a victory,"

it purred, a silken tongue, a certain poison,
as I stuffed my face into a horn, to muffle
the noise of living. But that horn was my life,
trying to wake me up. Addiction convinced
me life was my enemy. Told me to go relax,

have a drink, play Russian Roulette, blinded
to what this war did to everyone & everything
unlucky enough to be around me. Red flags
sprouted like grave markers & I'd be dead now
if I hadn't fucked that up too, more than once.

In 2013 I would go to bed, plain begging God
for death every night. That's why I woke up
so angry every God damned morning. So hard,
at the time, to have seen victory in not dying.
When finally surrendered it was a quiet thing:

"I think I have a problem, and I don't know
what to do about it, but God, I'm ready to try."
I didn't surrender to anyone, I just gave up
trying to die, and asked for help. I was tired
of taking myself hostage & demanding ransom

from the past. I dared to be selfish because
I had to try & do something good for myself.
I took a lot of things freely: suggestions, advice,
faith; things I never had before I let them in.
Now the sun shines, or it rains; things go on

as they had when I wasn't trying to die fast.
I've turned down the noise inside my head,
most days. I was given my life back. I keep it
in one place only" today. I sleep well, or not;
but I no longer pray to die before I wake.

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