Substance Abuse

you’re in my blood, darling,
like one too many at the bar
flowing through me while distorting
my mind and consuming
my heart.

you’re in my veins, you fuck,
everything my mother warned me about.
an irresistible, pernicious vice
that i simply cannot
live without.

-PE, 2014

“Writing: often it is the only thing between you and impossibility.”

The Daily Post

Writing
often it is the only
thing
between you and
impossibility.
no drink,
no woman’s love,
no wealth
can
match it.
nothing can save
you
except
writing.
it keeps the walls
from
failing.
the hordes from
closing in.
it blasts the
darkness.
writing is the
ultimate
psychiatrist,
the kindliest
god of all the
gods.
writing stalks
death.
it knows no
quit.
and writing
laughs
at itself,
at pain.
it is the last
expectation,
the last
explanation.
that’s
what it
is.

Charles Bukowski, “Writing.”

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Father’s Day (Sweatshirts)

Sweatshirts hang in my closet.
Older than even I, with more holes than
I can count on fingers and toes.
Smoke and old cologne
mix with cheap hair gel
to cling to the fabric.
and each time i pull one over my head
I am thrust back in time to when it was you
who filled the empty spaces, you who
stained them with beer and cigarettes.

Now, they hang in my closet
Damp, dark, and limp
but
Never forgotten.
Through the summer
and each passing year
I think of them.
I think of you.

Sweatshirts, older than me
swallow me as a I sleep
another dreamless night.

 

-PE

Anchor, 2014 (Rough Draft)

No longer my light,
But darkness itself.
The anchor that draws me
Into the deepest depths,
Blindly.
Quietly.

You, who taught me to
Swim,
Now threatens my very being
And my soul,
Beyond repair,
Cannot live on.

Manacles,
The cuffs of a slave
Some say,
The bracelet of a warrior.
But which am I?
Sinking,
I am prisoner of a failing body.
Further.
Captive of a weak heart.

Break the chains,
No, I will carry them
In fingers turned to bone
And fight for my next
Breath.
So I do.
I do.

But the victory
Is bitter.
One moment, a single gasp
of air
Before I find myself
Once more on
the floor of the blackwater.
And it is then,
That I understand.

I do not hold on because I love you.
I hold on because I cannot love myself.

-P.E