I'm more than the sum of this life, these slipshod years,
more than the weeping and the laughter,  the many smiles,
more than my elastic silences, my paperweight protection,
those lost desires of youth, the nightmares and the fear.
more then these ears,
missing the              I have            watch it as it 
symphony,            a kernel buried              smashes  
these hands              within            the shell away
clamped against                    releasing my potential 
the cacophony of pain,                     and freeing me
these fading eyes which stare                     to grow
westward towards the dimming horizon,
more  than the broken lives  which wallow in their waste.

©Jane Paterson Basil


42 thoughts on “Potential

    1. Thank you!
      You’re right about the shell – bits of it are flying everywhere, hitting Laura and Paul every time they try to stepout of line. If I wasn’t so angry I would be laughing.
      I like doing the visuals. It’s pretty simple really, but it’s a pity I can’t change the style of letters – I have to use HTML, and that’s the way they come out.
      After I posted it I thought that maybe I should have used a nut-shaped framework, instead of a rectangle, but it may not have read so well.

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                  1. Maybe, now your first draft’s over, you need to step away from the keyboard for a while? Shame the gardens are winding down at this time of year – nothing like a bit of nature therapy. Though the trees are still amazing, aren’t they? Bought myself a treat of some wallflower plants today – you know the bareroot ones? Going to go out and plant later and sniff those mulching leaves ….. Mmmmm 🙂

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                    1. I love wallflowers – they remind me of my mum. I think you are right – I’ll step away – now. I have to go and meet my foolish daughter anyway. We’ll go to the phone shop and solve one of the mysteries of her mobile…

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                    2. It’s not a problem – earlier this year I kept getting strange messages from Laura, but because she was in psychosis she thought they weren’t from her but somewhere else. I wanted to show here that nothing weird had been going on. I think she understands now.

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                    3. Who can say? I’m not holding out too much hope as long as he’s still using legal highs.
                      It is now illegal to sell those products for use as drugs, but they’re still in the shops as “research chemicals” and “incense”. Nothing hads changed, they were always marketed as such. If you go into a legal high shop in Barnstaple and ask which ones “will get you the most wasted” the assistant will point out two or three packets and sell them to you, even though it’s clear what they are going to be used for. They’re breaking the law, but someone needs to take video footage in order for it to be proved.

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                    4. Watched a TV report about this and it’s frightening. They put any old rubbish in there and as soon as that particular cocktail of chemicals is made illegal, they tweak it a little and it’s perfectly legal for them to sell it all over again. My boss told me some people snort the powdered flower we give away with flowers, though I think the results are quite unpleasant. When I was young we used to drink Strongbow and that was it. All the best for you both x

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                    5. Yes, I saw that too, that although the packaging is brightly coloured and clearly marketed towards a party culture, they have small print which says it musn’t be consumed. None of it’s tested and proved safe, that’s the scary thing. It could be just as dangerous as any illegal drug.

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                    6. The drugs services are hhaving real difficulties with legal highs. They’re having to tell some of the heroin addicts not to even think of detoxing from heroin until they are off legal highs, because they are recognised to cause more problems. .There has been a massive rise in deaths from heroin overdose in this area since legal highs went viral. I think most of them have been due to the use of legal highs. People don’t know what they’re doing when they are under the influence of them, and with crystal in particular, the psychosis can last for ten days after using it. If you have noticed the addicts in your area look worse than they used to, it’s not down to heroin.

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                    7. There must be some legislation that can be passed to restrict the sale of all of these things, that’s stops any drug not properly tested to be illegal? At least that would stop it being sold in the shops. We have a legal high shop on our local high street – I wouldn’t mind betting business is booming.

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                    8. They’re not sold as “drugs” but “research chemicals”.
                      If I buy a kitchen knife and cut my throat with it, the retailer will not be arrested. He had no way of knowing I was going to do that, and the legal high seller would make a similar claim, although he would be lying.
                      After all the talk in the queen’s speech, of banning them, I think the government’s taken the matter as far as they wish to, by simply making it illegal to sell them AS DRUGS. The police, the drugs services and local councils are seething – and, no doubt, the hospitals, while the undertakers are probably wringing their hands in anticipation – though that’s not a fairthing to say; undertakers are generally good, caring people.

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