Childhood Abuse · Poetry

Spirit – by Niall Madden


I found the spirit that I needed
It lifted me up from my chair.
Paused my breathing.
It was raw yet frigid,
Clawed at my throat.
Though it lacked weight
This drink helped me float.

It flowed in my glass- mirror
Image of myself looking back,
Fuzzy like my vision,
Blurred like my past.
To a witness in the bar they
See a fallen figure double down
Dousing fires in their soul
But the liquor burns them quicker,
Till the fire behind their eyes
let’s you gaze into their hell.

I prayed I’d never do this:
Never follow a father,
Who preached Vatican titles
Yet smothered his issues
in booze and substance abuse.
Then went to church the next day
and begged for his forgiveness
who then came later anyway
continuing misuse.
I’m not a man of faith
But I will not be a liar
I’ll pray to any god who’ll love me,
Stop me drinking
Like my father.

© Niall Madden 2017

Note from the author:
This piece explores the themes of childhood abuse and how children often lament when they do similar activities to that figure, yet at the same time have to do such things to overcome the trauma. For me personally it’s how my dad was an alcoholic, so when I drink sometimes I feel as though I’m becoming him.

Read Niall’s previous contribution

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