The point of surviving, or maybe the goal after survival, is enabling the voices of victims to be heard, starting with my own. I allow the surging waves of thought and feeling to rush the gates and exit. I try to bleed the bad with and without the use of leaches. So much is stumbled upon rather than sought after. Some things hound me; I run down the street with memory at my heels. I must let the screams out or become them. Today I talk, tomorrow is for others. When I pour forth, I open the way for the rest. I have become the megaphone rather than the cheerleader. It is good to be of use.
I have been to the wars and through the wars
and now sit on the stoop and wonder;
will I learn to live here in the world of everyday
after having had to spend so much time running for cover.
Each time I return to what I believe is my home
I sit and rock trying to pour my soul back inside
from my hipflask where it was held for safekeeping.
I try not to spill a drop
for it is worse than shed blood and harder to rebuild.
My soul has grown pale from confinement and lack of sun,
but it still exists and for that I pat my back
and suck on my Lifesaver;
I could have done worse, was unable to do better.
I console myself with the knowledge
I never started the conflict just learned to survive it.
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault