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He has a big heart, He will get through.
I loved and prayed As I hung to my crew.
Alanon meetings
As blind as a bat, Stories we heard
A stench of a dead rat.
21 came, fireworks blasted
Handcuffed, DUI, as I pleaded for him to stop, He landed with yet another DUI drop.
The fear surged through my teeth, Hard to explain
The more I became withered in pain.
Flying him off to Florida, The experts advice
A sense of accomplishment, Money is no compromise.
Little did we know
He was drugged and hallucinating, He jumped off a bridge
In fear while escaping.
Our son is missing
Still rings in my ear
Begging the police with our worst fear.
In the parking garage,
Under a car,
He was rescued with a shattered leg, Sent to a hospital afar.

Another rehab began, Please help my son
Teach him not to use, Show him the 12 step plan.
Meanwhile, my parents overseas Knowing nothing of out trauma, Sailed to heaven with ease.
7 years flew by never expecting anything other, Addiction got his brother.
Couldn’t be
Where did we go astray? Have I sinned in my life? Do I have debt to pay?
Psychiatrists, therapists, here we go again, I honestly can’t recall the details today.
A jumble of fear, hope, incense to pray.
My boys are in rehab
My daughter is my soul
She got caught in the eye of a storm, That swallowed her whole.
Tell me to detach
I tell you ,I can’t
I’ll give them my life
In a moment without a rant.
Our hearts have been sickened, As we hold to each other tight, The future is a mystery
With the end a dim light.

I beg my lord
As I lay to sleep
Take me first
Before my boys leap.
Selfish? Maybe
Love too much? Yes
You can judge me as you wish, I grew scales like a fish.
Addiction is a disease that swallowed us whole
My wish is to strangle it
Leave life in peace,
faith,
With my children around my shoulders, Like a prayer Shawl.
2 years have gone by
I knitted my shawl, Fooling my brain
To think of nothing at all.
I heard of a meeting where parents of addicts attend, I’m not like them, they won’t understand, I can no longer pretend.
I gave it a try
And as some members remember, I cried my heart out
Not wanting to be a member.
I can do this alone
I don’t need a hand
No more shame to share
I come from a different land.

More rehabs for my boys
My brain is unclear and can’t remember Who? What? When? Where?
No hope for surrender.
Tuesday’s came and went As I ached for another, Who do I worry about?
My first born, or his brother
Little did I know
I was being equipped with strength and knowledge, That my addicts feared
As I learned to let go
And watch them grow.
I am a mother of addicts
I have yet to understand
Why god gave me these issues
Does he not know I hear his command?
With the 12 step plan
Life becomes more divine

The nectar of life become sweeter than ripened grapes on a vine.
So my friends
Life is hard whether you’re a parent of an addict or not Take it as a blessing
Find peace, love, purpose
That your life struggles are suppressing.
My boys are fighting
For their life and future
As I go to my Tuesday meetings
Listen, learn, and knit another prayer shawl For a family needing.

He has a big heart, He will

An alternative to guns.

A shiny marble stole my heart as it landed into a shrapnel crater
The joy it brought me as I huddled over its target was greater.
Just another day escaping our daily ritual
Hoping our name escapes the obitual.

An alarm went off as we scurried our muddy bodies home
A scolding we expected my mother to erase
As she hurried to warm the gas tank
washing away the trace
Of a shattered land.

Our home is unstable but with all due respect
We bowed to our homeland
That shed tears of survival
In the prospect of Jesus
Crossing to Cana with his arrival.

As shadows covered the valleys
Weary of what’s to come
Fed with pita bread Sandwiched with full bellies
we drifted to sleep feeling numb

Childhood?
My brain recalls it With images of popcorn
Keeping our mouths busy
For little bodies that shrapnels haven’t torn.

Those memories live through me
As an American I became
To pass down to my children
A new home I proclaimed.

That river that flowed in a bloody land
Connected with a flowery creek
that my children had at hand
Knowing little of that world
Where children are fed pita
Savory, not bland

Peace is granted in more ways than one
As danger crept upon us
In trophies to all or some
Privileged are our children
Escaping the physical shrapnels
Indifferent to none

It is the land of plenty
Opportunity, self confidence
Slow to acknowledge
It’s poisonous substance
Lurking our sons
Into a peaceful opulence
With a gloomy blanket for pain
An alternative to guns.

Rivers flow with good and evil
To the land of forgiveness
Or the medieval upheaval.

Those shiny marbles are our children
Sent forth through life
Juggling between villain and villain.

An alternative to guns. A shiny marble stole

Author: Danielle B.

See, these days I occupy my minutes

with, the uniquely rich cancer sticks,

to make THAT part of me die –

over and over like a blister in the sun.

Burn.

You see, I am stuck

B E T W E E N

the lines that haunt me,

the way that anger and pride kindle the hurt

the ebb and flow of wasting time,

of rising anxiety – which is automatically lingering these days.

People once told me that, that, it’s good, “it’s good to be seen”.

Behind these walls — this is why I hate to cry –

because, it DOESN’T MAKE YOU STRONGER

because, I’ve been told to let go, to compromise.

I’ve learned how to calm the ego, down

to taste freedom, but ATTACK – the silence surrounds me.

I just might, push the breakdown

In terms, like lines, and boundaries –

How can I describe … the darkness, the isolation, and the self-loathing?

Like a breathless papercut,

Let me lick these wounds into ashes, but …

Wounds into conversations, and inflections –

Healing has this way where moving forwards becomes a place,

where dialogue shapeshifts into the kind of happiness that still chooses to wear a mask.

Hope moves like legs and fingers that try to find others like themselves …

Intertwining like subversion, like hollowed voices beckoning darkness.

And Time, it wraps around old thoughts slowly,

the way a cigarette burns down

down

down

filter.

The pain and trauma

from the past,

from today

from tomorrow —

like smoke signals, cylinders of stories

which construct, and influx, the way my mind clauses –

complicated little niches – :: INHALE ::

Deep, just so I can collapse these mother fucking lungs of feeling.

Because my mind is a crowded space

These questions, like fears, little disarmed monsters –

This is why I choose to light up these contexts, to keep old demons down

with sand and grit, smoke like a chain between the filter and me,

down

down

down

I make room for the healing. But, don’t worry about me.

This is why I choose

to let these cinders burn.

— Sometimes, I miss the girl who used to stand

in the dark corners

of bars

of alleys

who was waiting to die

every night.

Sometimes, I miss the

black and blues

the cuts and scars.

The storefronts

The light poles

The burning smell of rubber

and red and white and blue lights.

I can still feel the cold concrete

floor of Central Bookings beneath my fingertips.

She at least, knew herself.

I, still haven’t found

what I’m looking for.

Author: Danielle B. See, these days I occupy

Author: Kristen C.

When her father was drunk, he’d say ‘I used to have a brother, you know’,
He got faraway look in his eyes, a memory forming in the clouds,
His hands would open and close, tightening as his breath grew swallow,
Cruel thoughts manifesting at the bottom of his scotch,
But he’d smile again a minute later and the memory was gone,
Along with the uncle she wish she never knew she had.
When her mother was drunk, she would stumble and fall,
Tripping over more than her words, but,
Her smile was never as bright as when she was half way through the bottle of wine,
And her eyes held a shine that would never see the light of day,
But morning would always come, and with it the shameful dissonance.
Her mother always hides the bruises and broken glasses well.
She had never known the effects of the drink until later in her life,
For she had seen what could happen when a pain that deep ran in the family,
But she has come to understand the appeal of a drunken stupor,
Reality always made much more sense when her world was spinning.
When she drinks, she drinks to remember, to forget
It depends on the night in question,
Sometimes it’s to remember her mothers smile, or forget the haunted look in her eyes in the morning rays,
Or she drinks to forget the secrets she wished her father never spilled,
Drinks to forget the reality she helped create.
She knows the harmful effects of addiction to the bottle,
But she knows she cannot function without it; family traits and all,
Yet there is power every time she spills the bottle down the sink,
But she clings to the drops as though they hold a dying prayer,
She hates living on a silent scream, but she still she prays
Asking those above to save her from the same path as those before her.

Author: Kristen C. When her father was drunk,

Author: Allyson

It’s the nature of the beast
That turns lions into cowards
Relationships soured
They say
Just take it day by day
Hour by hour

But what happens when your demons get the best of you?
Have you wishing
That you knew
What you know now
Back then…
Oh, to be 17 again

As time goes on I find myself wiser
But at what cost?
Wisdom doesn’t mean we fail to be lost
Day by Day
Hour by hour
Death creeps closer,
We relinquish our power

The Reaper towers
Casting a shadow so dark..
That it’s loud
All we wanted was for them to be proud
But that’s the nature of the beast
Always looking for his next feast

Countless lives and voices unspoken
Leaving behind the pieces
Jagged, so broken

One by one
Hour by hour
Aching hearts
Surrender their souls
As their prison turns cold

Screaming now
Will there ever be a way out?

Just take it day by day
Or hour by hour
But only with help
Perhaps a higher power

If you find yourself battling the same demons as me and my friends,
Don’t ever forget how precious life is.

Author: Allyson It’s the nature of the beast That

By Allyson C.

10 years
It took me to realize
I am my own demise

10 days
I’ve been lying here
In misery
Cold, hot, weak, jittery
Inhale
Exhale
Nausea, Dizzy
When will it ever end?

10 seconds pass
An eternity

Listen
10 days in Hell
Such a small price to pay
After a decade of having things my way
I cheated, I lied, lost so many
I cried
The lies the lies the lies
It was worth it, right?
To feel nothing
To feel everything
To feel…
Belonging

10 hours later
My mind slightly clearer
Finding peace knowing
I am only growing
Forgive the lies
Forgive the pain

But never forget
The poison in your veins
Is truly what drove you insane
Caused all the pain
It’s finally time to
Change

10 years
I am strong
I am ready

To embrace the hands
That hold me steady
Never forgetting
The gift of desperation

By Allyson C. 10 years It took me to

You were the only one there
when no one was.
You were the only thing to take away the pain.
You numbed me.
You made me not have to feel the hurt I felt each day.
But then you numbed me, to the point where you were the only thing that could help me cope.
You to my mind, life, family, friends.
You took more then my hurt.
You took all of me and more.
Now I sit and of all the things I missed, wasted time because of you.
Now you are gone, I’m taking my life back.
You will no longer control me.
This is my LAST goodbye.
I’m in control now.

You were the only one there when no

Bright age of 16, year 11 ahead
them gcses staring down at me
im dead
poppin pillies like they were harmless
but struggled with depression regardless
silently slipping away
your heartless some may say
but you take those drugs to stop the world from going grey
as ofcourse theyre not as addictive as u say
im just conflicted
after all sexual assault aint fun when you’re the victim
ur gonna get done in by the system
i already have that wisdom
but now
all these shadows of my past
running fast running fast
problems here problems there
ill take a break anyday
in any way
even if that means throwin my life away

Bright age of 16, year 11 ahead them

‼️‼️ADDICTED‼️‼️

What was once a clear running stream. A stream surrounded by beauty and life
Trees grew tall and spread their wings to protect their young from the suns piercing rays and in the winter would shed to make a colorful blanket to protect them from the bitter cold.
Then came the wildlife
Birds singing, Butterflies dancing, Bees humming, followed by the sound of Nature’s bandleader..
The Mighty Lumberjack!!
Schools of fish splashing and playing as they make their way upstream.
Peace and serenity fill this tranquil place yet a silent but deadly venom lies just beneath the surface.
A venom so powerful it can neither be conquered or contained.
Then one day it happened
The skies began to darken and the stars began to quarrel. Lashing out at one another and shaking the earth as they fell.
Trees toppled, wildlife fled, an evil silence replaces the heavenly sounds of nature!
Soon a tear was all that was left of the stream.
A tear reflecting a memory of the past and an image of the future.

‼️‼️ADDICTED‼️‼️ What was once a clear running stream.

All this arguing and depression has really taken its toll…. so let’s leave it in the past and keep making memories that last, I know you’ll be my last but will I be your last?
I can’t imagine this life without you as this life would be empty, being with you has made the emptiness pass.
Life is fast, and love is slow so let’s stay together and allow us to grow.
Those feelings of jealousy, anger and hate was a stupid mistake….. I just wanted to say you was never a mistake or a second option for me. You make my life worth living as long as we stay free from the consequences of drugs that destroy us to our knees. We have big responsibilities now and little faces that look to us with glee, and that’s why we need to continue living a life that’s happy and free.

All this arguing and depression has really