Day 3

I called my uncle, said, I can’t today.  I’m sick,
I’m in no shape to leave my bed, much less
sit in a circle of shitty metal chairs
filled with people whining for just an ounce
of pity.  He said okay, he’d give me a ride
to the detox in twenty, reminded me
the deal was 90 days of this bullshit
or rehab.

I met him outside.

Sweating and shivering and
dry heaving, I met him.  He asked
if I got it now, if I understood
what they were talking about.
I told him to fuck off and drive.

It’s the worst flu I’ve ever had, aching
in every pore, freezing in a fevered sweat,
seasick on the sidewalk.  No Nyquil
could give me the relief that one
harmless shot would grant.  Instead,
I’m worse than sober.  I’m listening
to a twelve-step program that people keep
slipping down, or climbing up to find
they have no higher power, only
a higher number on a new chip
that they can’t cash at a casino.
Someone says, One day at a time.
Don’t dwell on the past or worry
about tomorrow.  There’s only
today.  Well, today I feel like shit.
What else is there?

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