My son has been addicted to hard drugs for many years. I have always stood by him, with empathy for all those in the same situation. However, I could never have imagined how long and painful the experience would be. Over the years the constant stress and frustration wore me down.
Eventually, I found a way to channel my hopes and fears. I began by scribbling in notebooks, writing down every emotion and every thought, good or bad. I could open my heart because it was just for me. Much later the notes became poetry of sorts. I hope my poems can be appreciated by both the person using drugs/alcohol and carers. Of course I could never really know how terrible addiction is for people but if one poem manages to stir feelings of hope or love for themselves, I would be overjoyed.
Down the skinny ginnel
Through the creaky gate
On a poison mission
Let the punter wait
This is power
This is wealth
Who cares about
The smack-head’s health?
‘I’ said the mother
Through her tears
Still hoping after
All these years
Her mission has
A different goal
Her only dream
Her child made
Policemen, teachers, politicians
You and me and top physicians
Where will it end we all despair
Where is God and does he care?
Each sleepless night, each sad tear shed
Empty purses, habits fed.
Kids on pavements all alone
Faces hollowed to the bone
I’m weary yes I’m no spring chicken
This drug’s nightmare takes some licking
It’s hold on folks has foxed the best
Broke many a heart put to the test
Thank you God for this new day
Another chance to find a way
Another bash to put things right
Another bout to win the fight
For when we think that all is lost
Life offers us a chink, a flame relit
A battery charged we race back
From the brink.
Who will say enough is enough
Who cares as much as I?
Who feels you pain in every vein
And sees with brimming eye
I am your rod, your leaning post
I made you every cell
I was your first and willing host
Can I free you from hell
Who stops the rot, who sears the wound
Who is brave enough to try
I will join you on the battleground
But this gift is for you not I
*** Thank you to Jennifer for sharing these powerful words. If you are affected by the drug and/or alcohol use of someone you know, we are here to support you. Visit www.carersleeds.org.uk/our-support-service/drug-and-alcohol-use/ or call the advice line on 0113 380 4300 for more information.