Got a corkboard the size

of a dining table

painted one side

of the frame bright yellow

the face

to be seen on good days

on the reverse the edge is

painted grey

that’s the side where my

dark notes hide

facing the wall so guests don’t

feel afraid

when they visit

and across the board

squares of white

paper are pinned

most of which list

reasons to quit, in neon

pink capital letters

others are bright green

bullets, distractions

to turn to when cravings hit

because I have no choice

but to cold turkey it

with no doctor no rehab no medicine

no tests no help no monitoring no way

no way out no other way to do this

except at home today

with panic and sickness

with shame and anguish

and the 9 by 6 grid

that no longer lists

your name

as one of my reasons

to live.

Originally published at Selcouth Station (July 2021)


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