Now and then something kicks me
Back into the shelter less wide open;
To the no man’s land of those days
when I couldn’t live but couldn’t die
Though the reminder is brief
I still feel the consuming
The gaping abyss of the whoring monster
Me at its edge - me in its grasp - me in its mouth.
And I Sense
That hole in my soul
The perpetual purgatory of bleak -
A craven emptiness.
When the monster fully turned on me
And nothing brought a breath of reprieve
Not a chemical in the world
Not a bite or a beating
Or my skin picked to pieces
Could fill the hollow
Twisted, jagged edged knives
dipped in the venom of my own sickness.
Freeze my eyes wide open blind.
Paralyze my sighs of woe and gasps for air
To silence outside of myself
Nothing outwardly registers the horror
As I watched the last long light of hope grows pale and small and far away
The measure of its meaning an abomination
For folk like me - who know its truth
Drowning in a sea of ruin at a depth others did not dive and cannot comprehend
The crippling lonely horror of souls being eaten alive
Hope ripped from our bodies in shark toothed, ragged tears
Feeling every bite yet unable to cry out
Today it is Gods care that I never forget and my prayer that I never really return
I can’t help but ache when I see it in others
(Even if I think I hate them).
I am new to the world in ways I’ve never imagined
I sleep in a room of lace curtains (no shades)
So that the dawn, whether bright or grey,
nudges me awake at the time I used to despise.
My body clock has changed along with my experience
and I am free of the dark where the creeps come out of the shadowy places and the hustlers
trade services for souls.
The first time In years that I saw a chemical free sunrise it terrified me. A link in the chains that
held me was broken off and I witnessed life open the book on a new day.
Firsts continue in this recovering life I’ve chosen.
Some are painful - All are flabbergasting
The first time I had a genuine good memory of my younger life and my brokenness screamed in
fear. I stood my ground and let myself remember joy. Oh the tears that rained!
Or the first time I made sober love
The terror almost trashed the magic
The vulnerability of the real competing with the iron fencing around my heart prompted a
whispered prayer from within me
And I was broken with a blessing of grace.
Hell, the first time a cop was behind me and I didn’t have a panic attack.
The first time I was able to look someone in the eye without shame
And on it goes…
My lace curtains remain my open door reminder of firsts
Life affirming and worthwhile
in the quiet communion with my Maker
Just as the birds begin to sing.
Kathleen Daley is a lifelong New Englander, enchanted by the muse of the seasons. She views her writing as a God gift that allows her to coax out what is hiding in the obvious. She delights in the full freedom of fiction and embraces the ‘What if?’ of a writers mind as the most stirring part of her existence. Some of her writings have recently been accepted by Gnashing Teeth publications and Short Story Avenue.
At 63 years old the former addictions counselor is a lupus survivor, a staunch recovery and mental health advocate and the married mother of two grown sons.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.