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Words of promise
dripped from your rounded lip
so convincingly that I didn’t notice
the constriction of your throat
beneath a borrowed collar with satin finish.

Sticking your neck out,
you shouldered the blame,
but your body was too weak with need
to make you other than a heel.

You could have bought back the spoils of your theft,
thereby reversing the trend and reducing the hurt,
but instead you roamed the backstreets;
a base addict in search of his dealer.

Thought you had the bottle to clean up your mess,
thought regret would lead you to make amends —
but the seam is split, the glass is shattered,
and the myriad shards
have sliced our hearts.


The Daily Post #Bottle

©Jane Paterson Basil

20 thoughts on “Shattered

    1. This is the story of my life, since I was 10 years old, and I’ve had 16 years of it with Laura and Paul. I never learn. At the moment I have faith that Laura is never going to slip back. If she does I’ll be devastated all over again.
      I’m sorry I haven’t finished the interview. Maybe I’m in trauma. It’s hard to eat, and I’m too tired to do anything much.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I know what you mean. Look at the end of the day… where would they be if you always gave up? I know it is hard on you to put yourself out there, but I wonder how many parents did that too and they succeeded? I wonder how many walked away only with regrets later. At the end of the day, I applaud you for being there for them. It is NOT EASY at all,. Take care of yourself and I do truly hope that things do turn out for you and your son and daughter.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. You know, I was thinking of you the other day. Have you ever tried to share your feelings with your son? I would think that it real life, that would be difficult. You have such an amazing writing ability. I just wondered (1) if he would read it and (2) if it would make a difference to him if you actually wrote out what you felt about everything. I know it is a long shot, but perhaps if you started conversing with him on paper – it would make it easier for you. If you give it to him or not, would be up to you. I know that he is in there somewhere, even though it is hard for you to see and I am absolutely certain he loves you despite what he has done. I just wonder if somehow your words would reach him at that right moment – and it could make a difference. Sorry for meddling, it was just a thought that passed my mind the other day when yes, I truly was thinking of you. I feel that we leave so much left unsaid… and in those moments when I needed it most, words truly did make all the difference in the world.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Please, no apologies. Don’t ever think that reaching out with a practical suggestion will be seen as meddling. I’m grateful that you should be so thoughtful and supportive.
              When Paul was in prison we wrote to each other often, and I felt that we were communicating much better than we did when we talked. If I try to talk to him he shuts me off. He doesn’t want to discuss things, so he gets angry and attacks me by accusing me of attacking him. He doesn’t give me a chance. I’ve been thinking of writing to him, but have felt too hurt and resentful to make a start. Maybe I just needed someone to suggest it to me, since I suddenly feel that it could be possible. I’m much better at writing than talking anyway.
              I keep thinking about how he’s hurting, and how his pain leads him to take the worst possible action every time. He’s just a child. He started using drugs (cannabis at first) when he was 13, so his mind hasn’t had a chance to develop, but he thinks he’s an adult… it’s tragic – a 13 year old with the body of a 29 year old.
              Thank you for the advice. I think you really have given me the push I needed. Who knows where this could lead… I’ll keep you posted.


        1. I’m OK today. Going into town to catch up with Mads and see how she’s doing. We have’t been in touch since Saturday night. I think we were both too traumatised by the behaviour of my son and her boyfriend.

          Liked by 1 person

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