Arrested development was bad enough; the living death sentence it imposes is completely unacceptable. My childhood ran down the hill away from the mountain of confusion that is life in this society. My ability to mature was damaged and what I learned to do was mutate. I could move laterally but never grow up. I became the goose being grown for its liver. All the honk and squawk in the world couldn’t change my plight. I don’t have to understand how I was let out of the prison of addiction. As long as I don’t go back I’ll never fear breaking out in handcuffs or getting locked in my crib.
Effort is already made, just add your hand.
The man with the chrysanthemum on his head
walks up and down the isle.
Do I look like that, I wonder to myself?
Have I taken personal style to the point of caricature?
What is the boundary by which
the embarrassment is kept at bay?
Is there a point at which I can overcome
who I present myself as,
and represent the best of who I can be?
Who I might be if only I can manage
not to get carried away by impressionism?
I am given this dwelling and it suits me quite well,
when I treat it as a temple and not simply as a shrine.
You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault