I came into these rooms with a mixed mental make-up and a polluted physical chemistry. I have been transformed but only into tiny droplets. The drops are not dramatic but the process is. Distillation of my thinking is a powerful thing. A volatile act of concentration takes place as my brain boils over and the sane is separated from the profane. Purity is a spiritual gift, the result of vaporizing my old thoughts. Many times the night distills the dew and I am quickly refreshed; other times I must cook for quite a while.
Exact a toll for crossed boundaries.
It is safe for the houses to sleep in the streets,
but not for me.
I cannot follow that which is so right and regular
for mundane things.
I am a jagged piece and it is hard for me
to find my place.
The sun comes though everyone’s windows
and peeks around the blinds left down.
I must mind my manners
and not be a nuisance or a bother;
draw no undue attention to my brightness
carry a basket to hide it in.
And while every river can drown its sorrows
in the rush of the downhill sweep to the sea.
I must stand here stock cold sober
and bear the pain appointed to me.
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault