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Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Longfellow a poetic life coach, spurring
me on by the side of a psych ward bed.

I had overdosed not once but twice,
had eyeballed “death” to find that there
is only life and our fight to live it.

Alcohol on Dad’s lap at five, no talks
of love or intimacy, no God, no Truth,
we were in the haze of the Wide path to Hell.

Alcohol as “drink,” C2H5OH ethyl a first
rocket fuel, flammable, volatile, toxic but
clear to go unnoticed to childlike eyes.

“I want that!” because Dad does it, and I
love Dad more than anyone or anything.
Dad and Mom—5th on God’s list of Commands.

I had skipped past “God,” worshipped a man,
then his drink, and when the Wife of my Youth
appeared in third grade: bedeviled, I failed.

I was a bedeviled liar by that time, unable
to speak my mind, my heart squeezed by
serpenty snakes, on the roof teetering, on

the back balcony faltering, on my way to
beer and pot and jacuzzi parties, sports abound
lying about who I was and what I wanted…

The wheels finally came off after college,
then skip a couple years, I turned twenty-five,
was barely alive, so when the Doc supplied

I took more than his dose, did what I had done
with vodka years before, took enough to feel it
in that moment, left me calling 911, 911, 911.

I never learned to live, I was half-dead, my mom
was in the other room when I was alcohol fed,
No one tried wrong, we just were on the Wide,

Wide path of destruction warned of by that
Rebellious rabbi some call “Christ,” Holy Moly
I’ve got truth at Al-Anon and AA, everywhere else:

Lies.  Guys, let’s be honest, “Alcohol as Drink” is
a lie, is the DEVIL, let’s decide!!!!

Be the hero in the strife, Longfellow spurring us
on past the finish line, stick your chest out like
Cristina Sanchez, proud of who we are, honest,

Fearless and True, we can cower at the bull, say
Boo hoo hoo, or stand up, get up again, brush
yourself off start a clothing line, live a dream become

the wind of hope, the outcropping of Good Orderly
Direction, make a schedule for TODAY only, planning
is fine, but God may laugh, Choose Life, a career, a path,

Giving up the Devil drugs and alcohol your first step
to heaven’s ascension, by the poem you write,
That’s the Lennon revolution, God bless us all,

I am suicidal no more.  But I was… And got out with
AA, love, truth, and courage enough to declare
Powerlessness, so that a great Power could come

in and clean up the mess.  One day at a time, is the
only way to live, and live we must, there is no death;
Thank you God for Now, today the only day in Life,

We write this dream together, and with Longfellow let’s
Say it again, one more time here, to let it sink in:

Be a hero in the Strife!!!  A hero in this life.  Steer into
your pain, stand tall like a Marine at his post, block
out your will, replace it with God’s, sacrifice and lean

in to your next promotion, it’s on the way—not because
it’s easy, just the reverse, because it’s difficult, Love,
Love, Love, and Love yourself.  Like my Uncle Les would

say: “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah!” and it’s that easy.  Hard.  Soft,
Long.  Give yourself to today only, leave nothing left at
the end but contented sleep.  You cannot find a better

Drug.  Not yet…  Not ever, as God witnesses a never-
ending beginning, the moment we open eyes, take
advantage of our sober dream, make amends, be a friend

Do it all again… “This time with feeling!!!”

Formerly suicidal is dead.  Life begins.  Today… is