14 February 2014

The Night My Friend Died



She relapsed hell bent, while dark overdrive
took her where she'd not gone for years, far side
of slick slope. She'd clung to recovery, night
meetings sparks of light to lead her way. But she lied
in secret ways or got left with sin's wage,
such fine lines woven between lost and saved,
or God turned his back on this great one, made
faulty wiring when precise was needed. Face
him now, demand redress for her, this nurse 
who loved fierce, taught with passion, like a church
shelters those in need, the worst of the worse
loved wildly, counted in, coins in life's purse,
valued by those with hearts big enough. Back,
bring her back. Back. Gone too soon, just lke that.


My friend died of an overdose recently and broke the hearts of we who loved her. Her presence filled a room. She gave of herself to her patients, advocated tirelessly for them, taught them as if their lives depended on it because it did and laughed with them with her whole body at the foibles that unite us all. I wish she didn't have to go. Damn this disease of addiction and its sabotage of good people's brains.

Written for dVerse Poets Pub for Tony Maude's Bout Rimés. He gave us a list of words to rhyme. They are: drive, side, night, lied, wage, saved, made, face, nurse, church, worse, purse, back, that. They seemed to tell my friend's sad story.

37 comments:

  1. So sorry to hear about your friend, a truly great emotional write. Hugs

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  2. What a powerful write, Mary. You made good use of the words & presented a strong message as well. Sorry for your loss, and sad as well about so many good people losing the battle with addiction.

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  3. heartbreaking...i have worked with addicts and after so long of doing well for them to fall...it hurts...especially when it is a friend and we have seen them healthy...i am sorry for sure....you used the form well to tell it...

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    1. She was a care giver herself for many years but vigilance is always necessary

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  4. oh mary...so sad to hear about her death... she sounds like she was an awesome person and having such a big heart for others even with her addiction, that you don't find often... hugs..

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  5. Such a sad story - and repeated all too often. Find someone to give you a hug for me please, Mary.

    Your use of the rhymes seemed very natural to me; although they were what you started with, it didn't seem like they were leading the poem in any way at all.

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    1. The words ended up being helpful to tell her story

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  6. Powerful writing here. You use of language is fierce and fluid. The lines grow into a crescendo of emotion - damning the disease which like all diseases eats its host and leaves broken, ruined, dying. Well done!

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    1. I am grateful for having words to tell this story...

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  7. This is such an elegant, beautiful tribute, Mary. Thank you. You've said it all right here. So sad :-(

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    1. Hi Greg, Didn't it just break your heart?!

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  8. The power of your poem honors Mindy. Your anger at this brain disease that took her life honors her as well. What a loss.

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    1. I hope in some small way it honors her. She deserves that.

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  9. Oh, I am sorry for the loss of your friend. And especially in that manner. You are brave to tell this story, and so very well. Thank you and godspeed.

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    1. We who know this disease must tell the story- addiction is a brain disease!

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  10. I am sorry that you lost your friend. The way you have told her story, the word list seems to have been created just for this. Very sad.

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    1. Yes, it seemed destined to tell this story. More than anything else, her death is so sad.

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  11. yes, quite sad. You have memorialized her well ~

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  12. My heart aches for you. Yes, addiction is truly tragic

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    1. I have to keep reminding myself, it's a brain disease and she had no choice.

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  13. I ache for her, for us. I miss her, She always made a bold statement with her presence, and now with her absence. Thank you Mary. It helps to share the memory of her.

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    1. Hi Lynn, yes, big and bold, we share her memory.

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  14. I know what it feels like to lose a close friend too soon. In the end, it doesn't matter how. Or why. What does matter is the hole left in the fabric of the lives left behind. Mourning the dead helps us begin to patch that hole. I feel your loss - I am so sorry for your loss. But heal, my friend. Mourn and heal.

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    1. When death is complicated by addiction and the prejudice and misconceptions about it, it makes mourning a bit messier. But you're right about the hole in the fabric and the need for healing. Thanks, Lou.

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  15. I am thinking of you at this time of loss...addiction is many of things. Thank you for sharing. If this can help in any way I offer it, something I wrote last week. Peace to you friend! http://www.anamnostos.com/2/post/2014/02/grace-in-addiction.html#.Uv9pL_ldVng

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  16. Damn, what a tragic shame. Can't even imagine the amount of pain that addicts shoulder...too many are caught in that dark space. You shared her story very well with the words given...so sorry for your loss.

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    1. It is a dark space complicated by the behaviors that are easy to blame, but it's such a downward spiral they're caught in.

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  17. Mindy hated the disease that, in her end, took her from us. She was one of the most passionate, loving, caring, giving warriors I will ever know. We are all blessed because Mindy was here. I share your anger, Mary. It has made me redouble my commitment to those I can help. Blessings.

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    1. I am blessed by having her in my life as well, fierce warrior she was. Yes, spread the word of what addiction is and that help is available.

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  18. I am heartbroken for you. I am so heartbroken, and mad, and sad, and angry, and so very sorry when I read of the terrible loss of our loved ones who leave us in this way. As you probably know, my gifted, beautiful, addicted, daughter equipped with a brain that also sabotaged her since her teens died of an overdose. Enough. I've had enough of this act that leaves so much pain in its wake. We must stand together in fighting for more help for those like your friend and my daughter. Where, oh where, do we start? Your friend helped so many and could not conquer her own demons. I pray she is at peace. And, I pray for peace for you.

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    1. I know your daughter's story as you've shared it, Sally. In the throws of their addiction their brain is hijacked so compassion and sharing info is important. There was a great article on FB recently about addiction as a brain disease. Peace to you also.

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  19. A powerful write, Mary about a sad ending to a wonderful life. Yes, damn addiction. It steals away some of our brightest stars.

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