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A Day In the Life of An Addict

Updated on February 22, 2011

This is one I wrote when I was in a mind-numbing state of addiction. My life was an empty ritual. Nothing had any meaning. I felt like my humanity was lost. Things have changed, but I still have nights like this.

Here I sit, and the chemical blend ignites in my hand. Burning toxic fumes, inhaled into my lungs. As I breathe in, I attempt to spawn any remnant of the passion I once held dear. Exhale slowly the poisonous waste. Tonight I place ink on this paper. Tomorrow, I will rise before the sun, to further feed the gluttony of my great nation.

I will swallow my pill, red or blue. Dressing to impress, I will determine which color serves my taste for the day. 76% robotic, methodically following my rising ritual. 24% human, tears will form briefly in my eyes as I recall feeling long past.

Arrive at my place of profession, waiting for my life force to take effect. My morning starts with flare and calm confidence, progressing ominously into a sense of despair and dread. My blood will begin to boil.

Smoke in my lungs, soothing me momentarily. The lighted hours tick by and the sun takes its leave. Return to my place of residence, my mind racing. My thoughts wander back through time. Why did she leave me without cause? Why was I not enough? Why do I fail at everything? Tonight……, I write…..

Backwards progression; repetition of history

Upward battle; always one step forward and two leaps back

Downward spirals; eyes closed, mouth open.

Forward march; into the chaos!

Left behind; do what you do best, without me

Right choice? You seemed to think so..

Connecting the dots. Riddle me that, riddle me this. A puzzle unsolved. An unanswered wish.

I need freedom.

Freedom of expression.

Expression on my face.

Face my fears.

My fears are prominent.

Prominent within.

© copyright Ben D.A 2010


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    • profile image

      therogoddess 5 years ago

      Wow I've been here before..I thank God for my deliverance

    • SilentReed profile image

      SilentReed 6 years ago from Philippines

      Even in your "mind-numbing state of addiction" you've manage with great lucidness to create poetry that give expression to the passionate poet inside you.

    • anjperez profile image

      anjperez 6 years ago

      first time i've read a very personal note on one's addiction. the most interesting part for me was what's going through your mind all the while it was happening. thanks for sharing this!

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      uriel - once again your comment is just TOO kind for me to accept easily haha. Thank you SO much for being soooo supportive and faithful in me, it means the world.

    • Uriel profile image

      Uriel 6 years ago from Lebanon

      Ben in deed you are strong, not in your body BUT you are strong at the core, your soul. NO one can write so profoundly about such experiences and be aware at the same time. Your strength resonates within you and that leaves ripple effects on your poetry. I don't think anyone should tell you how to deal with what you are facing, for in your writing i have witnessed capable of grappling with your demons and emerging successful. If by your words you can move the hearts of many, i believe you hold the secret will to change whatever you don't like in your world. Naturally, lots of great decisions start by words, yet great people turn words into actions. I am sure that you will surface as victorious as your words. Always with moving words, i salute you.


    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      This was a while back that I wrote this, but thank you Cheri. Honesty is really all I know :]

    • Cheri Bermudez profile image

      Cheri Bermudez 6 years ago from Maryland

      Profound hub. I could relate to it a lot. I give you kudos for your honesty. That type of honesty isn't easy.

    • profile image

      therogoddess 6 years ago

      wow..I feel ur pain I once was battling drug demons in my life at one point...I understand the cravings, the wanting to stop but cant...You are very intuned with your emotional side...Nice Job

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Misguided - thanks, I appreciate the read/comment. Yeah I've always been an open book for people to read if they so choose.

    • MisguidedGhost16 profile image

      MisguidedGhost16 6 years ago from Queens, New York

      thanks for letting us inside a pretty deep part of you. i respect you for using such a talent in a way that allows us to see into your core, and completely understand in quite an intense way. i look forwarding to scrolling up and reading more of your work

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      thank you gypsy, for the follow and comment :]

    • Gypsy Willow profile image

      Gypsy Willow 6 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

      You have ended up in the right place. You show your passion and hurts in your writing. You are surrounded by friends who will encourage you to grow your extraordinary talent. Keep writing!

    • Randy Behavior profile image

      Randy Behavior 6 years ago from Near the Ocean

      And because of that I will continue to read you and watch you grow.

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Randy, all your comments are flattering and wonderful.

      I really do write with full emotions, never held back

      My soul is for all to see, through my writing

      Thanks again

    • Randy Behavior profile image

      Randy Behavior 6 years ago from Near the Ocean

      Hands down my favorite. Its wonderful how you write without pretense here. Just you, just real... its like I had a front row seat in your head for a bit. I enjoyed this very much.

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      thanks faye! :D great to hear that , really

      please do lol

    • fayehelen profile image

      fayehelen 6 years ago

      Hi Ben :)

      This was fantastic, I think I could carry on reading you forever, fayehelen

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Thank YOU for being a fan of mine! I am also a fan of YOURS!

      I do believe one of my gifts may simply be creating poetry about some of life's tough issues, to where people can truly relate to it, understand it, and be drawn into it.

      I really hope so, at least

    • nighthag profile image

      K.A.E Grove 6 years ago from Australia

      powerful and relatable, especially for me and the experiences of my life, thank you sharing this in such a way that all can understand, regardless if they have been in the grip of addiction or not. I am so so glad to be a fan of yours!

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 6 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Compelling imagery that is as unique and as arresting as the writer. You are very talented, Ben. Addictions capture the soul and hold it hostage until it looses all true feeling and perspective. The only force that should hold any of use captive is life, itself, for it is boundless.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas

      This one gives me more insight than others...a peek inside...the questions that gnaw. I think you should write a verse that celebrates your life...your uniqueness and reason for being. You are here with the ability to write and touch the heart and souls of others. Not everyone has that skill or opportunity. Keep focusing on it, fine tune it, and share...hell, celebrate it in verse. In doing so, you may answer some of those questions that gnaw. WB

    • thisismylife9123 profile image

      Cheyenne Barroga 6 years ago from Salt lake city, UT

      sometimes i wonder if the addiction to love is the most destructive addiction of all. god knows that i've been hooked. so you're a cuddler, huh? never pinned you to be that kind of guy. lol! amazing hub.

    • Nikkij504gurl profile image

      Nikki Wicked 6 years ago from Louisiana

      yea those things are quite addicting lol

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Sligo - thanks very much

      Mentalist - haha, your comments are interesting, but I believe I'll take that as a compliment , thank you

      Nellie - Thanks for sharing that, and thanks for all the wonderful things you've said to me from the start. I'm really honored to get so much credit, from such seasoned,amazing people such as yourself

      Nikki - Love is the greatest addiction. Or for me, I happen to be addicted to affection, cuddling, feeling like I'm wanted

    • Nikkij504gurl profile image

      Nikki Wicked 6 years ago from Louisiana

      Im sorry you had to go through those things, but you are stronger than any addiction! and im sure your much stronger today because you went through that. its all about will power. the only thing i ever seem to get addicted to is love.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Each of us - no matter what our challenges - must find freedom from within ourselves. A writer has an advantage: a direct line into himself or herself. To be able to express what one feels and thinks - - whether or not anyone else ever sees it - - is to have a link inside oneself and it has the ability to become more lucid and clear by its own expressing.

      Oddly I read something earlier which I had to copy and save. I have many writer friends who either have struggled with dark demons or some still do. I always want to hug and comfort someone who is suffering and wish it away from him or her, but this piece reminds me that each of us MUST travel the special unique path that is our own, including its valleys - in order to find our own working relationship with the self to become our fullest self.

      I wouldn't want to encourage anyone to SEEK a dark path but perhaps it is more constructive to reassure someone who finds himself there already -- or who must fight the lure of it -- that it is OK; not ideal but it is the REAL at the time and learning to embrace the REAL is the first step to becoming whole inside. It hurts you to abuse yourself, but no one else should condemn you for it. If it's difficult to understand if we haven't been right there, - well, we can and must think of our own low points and empathize. We all have them.

      I have never ever liked to be "out of it". Being fully conscious is my preference - and sometimes the millstone around my neck! I used to get dental work done without anesthetic, I so hated being "out of it'! So maybe that has protected me from falling into what could be sweet escape at the time in losing full consciousness through substances. But full consciousness has its own price too. Feeling things so intensely can be painful. It is necessary to build an inner buffer zone at times. Nevertheless, it would be far more painful for me to be cut off from my feelings. I need to experience them and to learn how to deal with them as they arise. It's not always easy - but It's saved me, frankly, when I have fully experienced some losses almost too dreadful to mention which, perhaps, I might have been spared a little had I numbed the pain.

      I don't know how or even if that relates to you. I mention it simply because it is part of many other kinds of life experiences which can either take a toll or strengthen one. Knowing that others find within themselves the freedom and power to handle them is what does relate. Yours happened to be the anguish of drugs, and, I sense, loss of a love as well. But - as Saddle and others have mentioned - these things do build the character you possess within you and they give you more resources from which to write, as well. Sharing with others is a great tonic and healing balm and it is a direct route into your own being.

      The things I read earlier - I hope it may both encourage you that you are all right and also point the path to step over such impulses, use their energy and direct it to your own talent:

      "To be a genius you have to be something of a brute," Ralph Manheim told me. I know what he meant by the remark—a reference to a certain kind of toughness and single­minded determination necessary to pursue creative work. He wasn't inclined to elaborate further. Instead he fell into a long, meditative silence, looking without seeing the Paris street scene out his window, uncharmed by the spring breeze.?      - Denise Shekerjerian from the book, Uncommon Genius, about McArthur Foundation Award Winners

      I'm not the greatest dad on Earth, I'm doing me best. But I'm a very irritable guy, and I get depressed. I'm up and down, up and down, and he's had to deal with that too—withdrawing from him and then giving, and withdrawing and giving. I don't know how much it will affect him in later life, but I've been physically there. We're all selfish, but I think so-called artists are completely selfish: To put Yoko or Sean or the cat or anybody in mind other than myself—me and my ups and downs and my little tiddly problems—is a strain. Of course, there's a reward and a joy, but still ...

      - Rolling Stone interview of John Lennon by Jonathan Cott, recorded December 5, 1980, three days before his death.

      And from one of my favorite artists, Rod McIver, who posted the above quotes on his own page:

      "What is it about artists? Why are we so cantankerous? And the better the artist, the more innovative, the closer to the edge that he or she skates, the more "difficult," the more obnoxious.??"A friend once asked me why Jackson Pollock would walk through a party of his patrons—the rich, the trust funders—naked and pee in their fireplace. "Didn't he understand that he was limiting his market, reducing his prospects for financial success?" Well, if Pollock cared what people thought he could have never done the revolutionary work he did. It was ridiculed far and wide. So was Picasso's work, Matisse's, Cezanne's, Rodin's, Henry Miller's. Bob Dylan was booed repeatedly when his work evolved.??"The Rolling Stones, guests on the Dean Martin show and the butt of his jokes—I forget what he said but something about the Stones being animals, and they smell bad to boot, or something like that. The Rolling Stones didn't really care what he thought. Or said. In fact, they got energy from it. It made them stronger. The Monkees, not real, but better-behaved, are barely a footnote to rock 'n roll. They lacked inner momentum, they lacked a commitment to their art. They played to make comfortable teenagers feel comfortable about their comfortable lives. We're better off without them.??"Hemmingway, Henry Miller, Jack Kerouac, Miles Davis, Hunter Thompson, Jimi Hendrix, van Gogh, Van Morrison, obnoxious sons of bitches one and all. But without them, our culture would be lesser, hollower. More self-proud, more comfortable, more self-satisfied. But narrower. In lots of ways. Including what it means to be alive, how we understand the potential of a human life."

    • Mentalist acer profile image

      Mentalist acer 6 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      The chaos without content or contentment leads one into the utmost of culture shock when taking the u-turn,and your heartfelt writing is the closest thing I know of to keep from getting a ticket.;)

    • sligobay profile image

      sligobay 6 years ago from east of the equator

      Saddlerider and I have the experience of addiction in common with you. It's been more than ten years since I have touched a drink or a drug and I have been freed from the slavery of addiction just one day at a time. You can rise above your pain and soar.

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Pooh, haha you're right about your name and darkness. lol

      Saddle, your encouragement has been wonderful since the very first day I joined Hubpages. You are someone I would love to meet and have conversations with, and you led me to a number of INCREDIBLE writers.

      Thank you for everything, and I am very glad that you respect my writing.

      Also, I'd like it if you would take a look at my Hub "A night, a porch, the sky, and the moon".

      I wrote it tonight, and it is my personal favorite that I have ever written.

      Thanks again

    • saddlerider1 profile image

      saddlerider1 6 years ago

      Young Ben take it from the Saddlerider who has been down in the gutter of life a few times in my earlier life, it wasn't pleasant at all, thank God I had people who helped and put me back on the track. Chemicals, booze and smoke will kill us if taken over a prolonged period of time.

      I tell my youngest son 17 yr old that I fully understand he wants to experiment with Cannabis, however everything in moderation, excess kills. He fully understands my position and respects what I convey.

      You are a talented writer, don't be consumed by anything more than your writing. Yes there are and have been great artists, writers, musicians etc etc who blazed a trail and left the world from drunkedness and drug abuse.

      They paid the ultimate price, we were the benefactors of the great works they left behind. But do we as artists want to follow their footsteps in abuse.

      I know I don't, I am very capable of writing without being addicted to anything more than my quill, my muse does not offer me chemicals or booze to create. So take heed my talented young writer and let your soul scribe for you.

      This was a sad and I felt painful write for you, it's okay to let it out, we are listening and are here for you. Keep up the great writing, you are skillful and talented. I have must respect for your creativity.

    • Poohgranma profile image

      Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge

      My name has got to go ... Pooh and dark poetry just somehow don't mix.

      I believe you are up for it and trying, is of course, all any of us can do. But you have an edge ... real talent.

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Pooh, thank you for encouraging me to write with passion

      I believe I am up for it.

      Trying is the best I can do for now.

    • Poohgranma profile image

      Poohgranma 6 years ago from On the edge

      addiction, insanity - lots of the same ingredients all mixed together. Add to that abandonment, indifference, an empty aching hole ...

      you can reach people if you keep writing but you must want to write more than you hurt. You can't do both to this degree. You have to make the choice to live and have an impact. Are you up for it?

    • BenWritings profile image

      BenWritings 6 years ago from Save me from, Tennessee

      Thank you tnderhrt. I'm glad I was able to convey emotion. :]

      Angela - thats what I was hoping be able to express the feeling of it to anyone, whether or not they have been there

      Thank you

    • angela_michelle profile image

      Angela Michelle Schultz 6 years ago from United States

      This is very good, and interesting from a non addicts perspective.

    • tnderhrt23 profile image

      tnderhrt23 6 years ago

      Very intense,BenWritings! I felt the pain and sense of hopelessness and despair...I pray you find peace and freedom from the chemicals...before they kill you, and peace of mind and spirit, so that you don't need them!