“The first step, my son, which one makes in the world, is the one on which depends the rest of our days.” – Voltaire
Reaching up from this muddy pit
My hands find the first rung
I’m not letting go of it, my feet still stuck
Screaming at the top of my lungs
From this first rung on the ladder
I will not be thrown
Everything in me yelling, you can’t do it
Everyone around me laughing at my attempts
No comfort, no friends when your down this low
The first rung is all you have
Yet I climb, slapping for the next rung, I will ascend
Out of this frothing mire
I will not let go, beaten down time by time
I find myself alone, beginning again
I shake myself from my own doubt
Now I find myself afraid to succeed
What will be required of me?
No more easy carefree existence
The struggle becomes necessary to stay on the ladder.
At the bottom, swimming aimlessly in the lost masses
Who cares what you do?
As you climb out, everyone looks at you, they are encouraged by your rebellion
To climb out of their own mess, to take the challenge of living again.
This first rung, the hardest, taking the most courage to live beyond
The lies spoken to you from those in your youth, and by your lovers
Who are no longer there.
Discomfort at having to leave your habits, your friends.
Not everyone will follow you up,
Most times, no one will.
You will have to meet those who are climbing on your way up.
You see they left the mire long ago,
Every now and then glancing back to see the despair
Which they escaped so narrowly.
So I cling, to this first rung, by tenacity, hard to define
This first rung is life, this first rung is mine.
Also published in: Broowaha
Also published in: Life As A Human
“What a terrible feeling to love someone and not be able to help them.”
― Jennifer Niven, All the Bright Places
An inexorable sadness crawls over my soul
My familiars struggling for breath, swallowing
Great gulps of life’s saltwater hopelessness
And I am powerless.
An unexplainable fountain pours the source
In touch with the obscure, a manifest creeping
mindlessly moving and untouchable seediness
And I am powerless.
An excruciating desire grows in my soil
To lift a hapless soul from withering
In a vortex of spiraling downdrafts
Am I powerless?
“The whiskey was a good start. I got the idea from Dylan Thomas. He’s this poet who drank twenty-one straight whiskeys at the White Horse Tavern in New York and then died on the spot from alcohol poisoning. I’ve always wanted to hear the bartender’s side of the story. What was it like watching this guy drink himself out of here? How did it feel handing him number twenty-one and watching his face crumple up before the fall of the stool? And did he already have number twenty-two poured, waiting for this big fat tip, and then have to drink it himself after whoever came took the body away?” ― Michael Thomas Ford, Suicide Notes
Weeks on end drowning in these spirits brewed
Bumping and stumbling, and a few more days are screwed
I’ve given up the outlawed and on board is the legal kind
And society says it’s ok to throw it away and imbibe
The wagon calls again and the wheels turn so slow
That’s real damn good ’cause I jump on as it goes
The drink she calls every morning before the sun tames the night
and she’ll sing and dance all day till sleep wins the fight
God for one day where something won’t wrestle for my soul
It isn’t just the past that I finally need to really let go
The chains of my thirst bring them and I hide my ears
to silence the sadness that grows from minutes to endless years