By Debbie Lynn
…And as the outcasts in dark corners shutter in pain, the world keeps spinning
I will never glamorize the things that are dark and unhealthy.
The underbelly of society is nasty place to dwell; it is a rebellious, an anti-social and a destructive life that exists out there, yet few have witnessed at its core.
Smokey enclosures, tapping the vein, white and black powder, just a few ways to escape. Erratic movements, calculated words, and the slyness of deceit to get a fix, a smoke, or to find solace in a soulless body…it’s all there. Insane fantasies, corrupted thinking and skipping a meal to keep flies off as a myriad misfits embrace the wee hours of night. Daylight is just too hard to deal with.
The lost priorities, denied hope and fallen angels surround the mind and make it bitter. The friends of the friendless go in packs, because howling at the moon is more than an outlet; it’s an intense plea for warmth.
The hatred of all things normal burns inside. Normal is a distant cry, a tattered rag, and an uncomfortable and nasty space that was left long ago in a world of hurt. The underworld is an exclusive club. It laughs at lilies, caresses thorns and utilizes vulnerability as a dance partner. The lowest of the low dwell there with an elitist attitude yet could care less about it (or anything else for that matter unless it is an altered state).
I caught you knockin’ at my cellar door
I love you, baby, can I have some more
Ooh, ooh, the damage done
I hit the city and I lost my band
I watched the needle take another man
Gone, gone, the damage done
I sing the song because I love the man
I know that some of you don’t understand
Milk-blood to keep from running out
I’ve seen the needle and the damage done
A little part of it in everyone
But every junkie’s like a settin’ sun
Songwriters: Neil Young
The Needle And The Damage Done lyrics © O/B/O Apra Amcos
Salvation in waste land is timid, tired and raw. It is impossible to fathom and coming up, coming out and coming clean is the hardest thing to do, but if you have the will to survive, perhaps it can be done. I found that will in mediation but didn’t know I was mediating.
Because courage can be elusive, much of it is found when we bend our mind. Yet rock bottom sometimes doesn’t have a bottom unless you have crossed over. And it was there, looking at the light, I fought for freedom. I decided life was truly a dream state and I held it, held it close, held it lightly, and there was so much more to do than be wasted.
Sitting still I could easily recover a feeling of bliss (like being high) yet completely sober. There is such contentment in being empty. Empty doesn’t mean not thinking or feeling, it is quite the opposite. It is full, it is personal, it is clear. It is exploring the pulse of your heart, hugging your thoughts, and huge intakes of oxygen. It is gratitude.
And one day you realize, the things that matter are as simple as a blade of grass, the whisper of the wind, the endless stars. And you can become them, just as you did when you were high. But high has a new relevance; it doesn’t come in the form of smoke, pill or liquid. It is mind/body/soul, and it is peace.
So when things are looking like a “cigarette moment” with a little pill and or a cocktail, please remember how that smell clings to the soul. It stains the clothing and ruins a smile. It is ugly, addictive, and kills hopes and dreams. There is nothing romantic, or chic about swirling smoke.
Swirl in your mind, it is a healthier alternative and we need you.
Editor: Dana Gornall
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