I drink too much on occasion;
I smoke too much sometimes,
too; I take drugs every day; no
it’s not you it’s me. Really. Inhibitions?
I don’t have them. I know how
to say, I want this. I fancy you.
Please kiss me. But still,
I don’t let you see me sober.
Sobriety is a curse -- it is me
stripped bare and saying, See
how damaged I am? See the pain?
The fear? The insecurity and doubt?
See where I come unravelled, where
I am frayed and worn, where you
can see the light shine through
because I have no substance left,
at all. See where I come undone.
I fill myself with cloudy smoke
to obscure what I truly am -- to hide.
It is putting on a mask, or perhaps,
wrapping myself in a shroud. It is
comforting, calming, centring.
You don’t believe me; that’s okay.
Or maybe you’re not sure. I still
won’t let you see me sober.
Because, let me tell you, me sober?
I’m not what you think I am. I am
not who you think I am. I am not
the inquisitive, intelligent creature,
with an open smile or an easy laugh.
I am a darkling thing. Furtive.
Irrational. And sober, I do not have
my voice. Sober, I -- me -- myself--,
am not the strongest; I’m not the one
that is heard. This body, sober, isn’t me.
Someone else comes in
when the drugs wear off.
She walks like me, she talks like me --
but she isn’t me. I don’t want
you to meet her. Not yet. But someday,
you will look into her eyes. Will you
see me there, deep inside, standing
in her shadow? Will you see me
scream in silence? Will you see that
when I go mad, I do not go anywhere at all?
Will you see her and think she is me?
My sobriety is where she lives -- where
she rules -- where she is in control. So,
I don’t want you to see me sober.
Because I fear you won’t see me.
You will see her -- and she’s a fucking monster.
Let me keep her under lock and key.
Just a little longer. So maybe --
by the time you meet her --
maybe you’ll fight to keep me instead.