Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wartime Prayers

I honestly think that sometimes the best indication of what’s going on in America can be gauged by the spam we get in our email. For the last month my junk email box has been overflowing with three predominant themes: Emails advertising online prescription tranquilizers, replica Rolex watches, and Viagra.

Now, everyone knows that times are hard, and stress levels are at an all time high. But really, are Americans comforting themselves by putting on junk jewelry, getting stoned and screwing?

Wartime Prayers Paul Simon

Times are hard, it's a hard time
But everybody knows all about hard times.
The thing is, what are you gonna do?
Well, you cry and try to muscle through
Try to rearrange your stuff
But when the wounds are deep enough,
It's all that we can bear,
We wrap ourselves in prayer.

Because you cannot walk with the holy,
If you're just a halfway decent man.
I don't pretend that I'm a mastermind
With a genius marketing plan.
I'm trying to tap into some wisdom,
Even a little drop will do.
I want to rid my heart of envy
And cleanse my soul of rage
Before I'm through.
A mother murmurs in twilight sleep
And draws her babies closer.
With hush-a-byes for sleepy eyes,
And kisses on the shoulder.
To drive away despair
She says a wartime prayer

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Take A Step Back

I don’t know how much longer I can work in a drug and alcohol treatment center that is court ordered. Most of the women aren’t here because they’ve seen the light. They’re here because they’re feeling the heat. I haven’t worked with one yet that was really “on fire” for recovery. I don’t mean that to sound judgmental. Lord knows they arrive with a shitload of baggage and this is just another stop along the line. Some of them are just doing their time, they aren't really serious about recovery. It breaks my heart to know that there is a solution, and it is available to anyone with a little willingness and faith. I don’t know why some of us choose life and some choose the inevitable jails, institutions and death.

When they violate and leave, it seems there’s little or no hope for them……..And their children…what happens to those sweet children that had just begun to feel they had a safe place to lay their head at night?

I’m relatively new at this. I haven’t learned how to divorce my feelings from “the job”. I was warned in the beginning that I might eventually suffer from compassion burnout and wouldn’t feel anything. I’ve been doing this for a year now and (for me) it’s quite the opposite. I’m on compassion overload. Lately there has been one too many heartaches. I think I need to step back for awhile.

Point Blank Bruce Springsteen
Well I saw you last night down on the avenue
Your face was in the shadows but I knew that it was you
You were standin' in the doorway out of the rain
You didn't answer when I called out your name
You just turned, and looked away just another stranger waitin' to get blown away
Point blank, right between the eyes
Point blank, right between the pretty lies you fell
Yea point blank, you've been twisted up till you've become just another part of it
Point blank, you're walkin' in the sights,
Point blank, livin' one false move just one false move away
Cause point blank, bang bang baby you're dead.