I hate this fucking illness.
I hate it with a passion.

Why must it
be so random
in the way
it picks the lives
which it chooses
to destroy?

But other illness
does that too.
This one’s such
a fucking bully,
that’s what
I really hate.

Why must it pick
out those –
squash their potential,
waste their lives
and kill them young?

Why can’t it kill
the bastards too?
I suppose I know it must.
but every now and then,
what occurs to me
is that its them
– the bastards –
who survive.

Perhaps that is
the reason
that its me
who’s still alive!



I am posting this today on an anniversary of my own sobriety just as a reminder to myself.


24 Responses to “Addiction”

  1. Elaine Randall English Says:

    Which anniversary is this for you? Life has a way of dealing out the things that can teach us the most about becoming more spiritual and fully human…we just have to agree to that.

    • belfastdavid Says:

      22 this time Elaine.
      I hadn’t intended to post anything today but a chance meeting at Starbucks in the station with a still struggling alcoholic reminded me how grateful I was and so prompted me to put this up.

  2. I have always thought of this as one of your most powerful poems, and it is perfect for reminding yourself of just how far you have come. I know an alcoholic is never really cured (because you told me), but 22 years of not drinking means 22 years of living! Congratulations, and may you “live” many, many more! *smile*

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Oh, I am still an alcoholic Shirley,

      But taking one day at a time the days do add up!! 🙂

      So I will continue to do just that.

      Thank you

  3. christine Says:

    I just want to acknowledge your sobriety anniversary on here too. It’s a wonderful achievement one day at a time.

    The poem is a very powerful reminder for me. Thank you for posting it.

    I also want to say thank you for everything you have passed on to me which has helped towards getting me where I am today. You are truly leading by example.

    Lots of love



    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Christine,

      The commitment I took on when I got sober was to pass on the message. I take that commitment just as seriously now as I did then.

      Lots of love


  4. Yes David, it does do that, alright… I recently had my 25th, myself… You, though my friend, are no bastard.. Loved this truth as told by you!!

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Sandy,

      I accept what you say today. At the time the poem was written I wasn’t so sure!!

      Well done to you too 🙂

  5. I completely understand this and Happy birthday my friend…one day at a time

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Katherine.

      It is for ever one day at a time.

      In answer to the question – How do you get to be sober a long time? Don’t drink and don’t die!! 🙂
      Keep it simple in other words

  6. Leeza Coleman Says:

    Happy day, David!

    Nifty ink.

    Twelve Steps without Walls.

    ~ grinning ~

  7. Congratulations on 22 years of freedom. I wish you the same for the rest of your life!

  8. David ~ your a wonder! You really are….It’s an honor to know you….

  9. Congrats with your aniversary and many happy returns! You don’t look like a bastard to me btw, so also good people survive!

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Ina,

      In the early days I wasn’t so sure, but today I accept that “good people survive” 🙂

  10. peta straatman Says:

    Hi, twenty-two years ago I walked into my first Al-Anon meeting and told them my partner had gone away for six weeks to get sober and I had to learn these 12 Steps before he got back and what was the quickest way please.

    There was a lot of very solid recovery in that meeting and in time I came to be so grateful for having been “mixed up” with an alcoholic because it gave me the 12 step programme which has been both the best thing I have ever done and the most painful. It took a long time to learn about detatchment and to accept that the world could manage without me running it (I still have occasional doubts).

    Yes, it is “one day at a time” but at its best it is “this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it”.

    Happy anniversary to you too!

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Happy Anniversary Peta,

      This is a lovely message – Thank you.

      And I love the quote you have used for one day at a time.

      Coffee? – I will send you a separate email.


  11. Happy Anniversary!!! David,
    and congratulations on all your hard work and passion for a life lived whole and well.

    Your honesty with recovery is inspiring has always been and your message holds value not just for those who are struggling with alcholism or who have struggled with it but it also has value for anyone who has faced or faces struggles to find themselves well and whole.
    I greatly admire your strength, honesty and tenacity.

    This poem really stands out for me. You have indeed come a long way from where you’ve started.
    I feel very blessed to have come to know you and to be able to call you friend. You are a good man.
    It may well be one day at a time but you show each day through can be a good day, a hopeful day.
    May you experiance many more days of freedom and the joys of living whole and well.

    Have a good week!


    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Tikarma,

      The great bonuses for me in Sobriety have been in the friendships I have made. I have people in my life today who just would not have been there had I carried on – not least my younger son.

      Yoday I value and appreciate the love which exists in those friendships. Why would I want to put them at risk for the sake of a drink??

      Some of those friendships exist mostly on the internet but I have put a dream out there so we shall see. 🙂

      You have a good week too. Enjoy your garden.


  12. hey there’s not a lot you can do when comes to genetics and the susceptibility to alcohol. to recognize the need to abstain is the greatest challenge. proud of you.

    remember … those who remain a victim in their hearts, can never be free from oppression in their minds.

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