Outside my sanctuary

outside, vague mist
tints the winter air with grey,
rain clings to the window, begging entry, but
I will not let misery into my sanctuary

she has done it this time;
cut off her sticky road to death
with a final, mind-blowing drug theft.

already she has caned her cache,
grabbed less than a week ago;
a four-day gouching binge,
and now she is finished;
hated for what she did,
she cannot reach the dealers.
most of them have changed their profession,
and she has robbed the only one left who would give her
not only the time of day, but drugs for free.
there is no-one to turn to, even if
she had the money to pay.

addicts have no sympathy for the enforced solitude
of one who swept the town clean for her dangerous delight
so, she is rattling, well, thanks to her they are rattling too.
It may rain all night, but she has dried up the supply.

beyond the thin mist that fails to drown me,
is a mud-slicked path to a rain drenched cottage
whose walls offer no sanctuary for those who rage within.

I am drained of the will to pity the father
who so carelessly composed this destructive, unfinished symphony.
I used up all of my pity on the most serious victims
of his ear-splitting quavers and minims,
and now there is little pity left
even for my sick children,
who sit carefully apart,
each sunk in their
own, individual
rock-bottom
hell.

already my hopeful son
is looking upwards, climbing slowly,
seeing a light twinkle, fade, and return a little brighter,
but my daughter sits atop a self-made mountain of difficulty and fear,
in a stinking, vomit-strewn room, wriggling, groaning,
clutching at her stomach now that
there are no longer any straws to grab.
a pariah now, her only option is rehabilitation.
I cannot dwell on her twisting agony, only in the hope
that she will soon be free within her mind;
although in three days she expects
her body to be transported
to prison,
for the crime of shoplifting,
followed by a spate of gross stupidity.

outside, the mist still fights for survival.
I refuse to let it enter my sanctuary.

I paste the faintest wry smile across my face.
my whirling dervish has been guilty of a deluge of evil crimes
committed against her family, friends, enemies
those she loves, those she hates
and even those to whom
she is indifferent.
they litter her history
in various states of health and decomposition

but she is to be punished for the crime of shoplifting
and failing to abide by the court’s decision.

©Jane Paterson Basil

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14 thoughts on “Outside my sanctuary

  1. You need to do that to survive. It’s not unlike what I did when working in mental health, although that is a poor comparison to your circumstances. I found that I couldn’t be ‘present’ or supportive in a meaningful way if I lost my objectivity.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. One day at a time, right? 🙂 Really powerful work happening here. Very dynamic, I love that you About Page is also a poem. I am grateful to NOW be following the world you are creating here on your site. Thank you, Zach from StrengthsLife.com

    Liked by 1 person

            1. That’s a good answer – mine must be over by now, and I hadn’t noticed. It’s bedtime where I am, so darkest hour or not, it’s time for sleep, and when I wake up it should be daylight, and time to do some work – although I’ve started repainting my home, and I’ll do a bit of that before going back to my writing. 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

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