THREE TOYS FLOATING
I bat the ducks across the surface of my bath. Soaking is supposed to calm me. I’m waiting. I assure you my impatience is no help to this process. These yellow, tub-bound misfits grinning at me don’t fill me with the joy of living, either. I have blown bubbles until I’m blue. I smell like a French elevator from the bath oils. My hair is stiff with conditioner; my face packed with mud. “Do the right thing,” said my sponsor. She is such a pain. Here I am bubble bath to my armpits, and not a hint of peace. Her question rings, “What do you want?” But isn’t it obvious? If I knew that, what would I be doing wrinkling in this swilling vat? I wouldn’t. I would be out doing my ‘thing’, whatever that ‘thing’ is. How I’m going to figure myself out I don’t know. And ‘she’ is no help, (you know who ‘she’ is, she the sponsor lady)
So what do I want?
World peace. A clue. Maybe just a hint.
But I know part of it. I know more than I admit.
I want sobriety and happiness, dignity and respect, enough time to do these things, and love.
“Well,” says she, “those things are easy. Work the steps, then the traditions; practice them, do service, and take the advice you give to your own sponsees.”
I stick out my tongue in her general direction.
Creep toward the unknown.
The first time I arrive at the beach the tide is a shock to me.
I had no way to anticipate it.
As the days pass I calm, realizing there is a rhythm
and that the sea won’t escape the shore.
Over time I begin to anticipate the movement
and then rely on it.
I learn to live with the in and out nature of the water
lapping the lip of sand;
What it brings and what it takes away.
I am human, I adapt, I survive.
How do I make the jump to blessing the moon?
How do I touch the divine?
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault