This week's Poetry Potluck has a fun theme... looking back over my life I can think of no more important memory than that of my last night of drinking. I was playing in a band, in a bar in Toledo (and no, it wasn't across from the depot lol) and I had decided that morning that I was going to play the show sober (no drugs or alcohol). By that afternoon I had forgotten my morning pledge and was up to my eyeballs in pot and beer. So I decided that since I had begun, I might just as well make the most of it. I recall having over $20 in my pocket that evening and after buying a sandwich and a couple batteries for my bass guitar pedal, I blew the rest on $1 beers (that was our pay for playing). I distinctly recall sitting at a Frisch's Big Boy in downtown Toledo at God only knows what time in the morning, feeling stone cold sober after all that smoking and drinking. That freaked me out and gave me the push I needed to stop drinking after that and visit my first ever AA meeting. They say that if you've forgotten your last drink, you haven't had it yet. I've never forgotten mine after 15 years sober in AA. I am grateful for this particular memory.
I'd made a small pledge from up on my ledge,
looking out at the mess I'd become.
I was going to try something new, something dry
at the club in the haze, no more could I lie.
I'd not take a drink, nor a smoke or a snort.
For tonight I'd be sober, I'd likely retort. (to anyone who asked)
I had not a clue what it would be like
to play our tunes clean in front of my mike.
I had not drawn a true sober breath
I'd needed a break to be sure.
I knew it was trouble, but I had no clue
just how much damage I'd every night do.
When drinking and drugging, singing and playing,
I had no idea it was me I was slaying.
"I'm not going to do this again!" turned into:
"How could this happen again?"
And there I was, so much the poorer in dollars and sense.
Yet sober I felt at 3 in the morning,
I had no more money but heeded the warning caused by my failed experience.
So off I went on adventures so grand,
that to this day, whenever I land
in a difficult spot, or quandry, or knot,
that all I must do, is remember my plan
to stay sober that night, my insane little plot.
I've climbed down from my perch on the merry go-round
and all I can say is what's lost is now found.