‘The Addict’ – Anne Sexton #5

Sleepmonger, deathmonger, with capsules in my palms each night, eight at a time from sweet pharmaceutical bottles I make arrangements for a pint-sized journey.
I’m the queen of this condition.
I’m an expert on making the trip and now they say I’m an addict.

Now they ask why.
Don’t they know that I promised to die!
I’m keping in practice.
I’m merely staying in shape.
The pills are a mother, but better, every color and as good as sour balls.
I’m on a diet from death.

Yes, I admit it has gotten to be a bit of a habit- blows eight at a time, socked in the eye, hauled away by the pink, the orange, the green and the white goodnights.
I’m becoming something of a chemical mixture.

That’s it!
My supply of tablets has got to last for years and years.
I like them more than I like me.
It’s a kind of marriage.
It’s a kind of war where I plant bombs inside of myself.

Yes I try to kill myself in small amounts, an innocuous occupatin.
Actually I’m hung up on it.
But remember I don’t make too much noise.
And frankly no one has to lug me out and I don’t stand there in my winding sheet.
I’m a little buttercup in my yellow nightie eating my eight loaves in a row and in a certain order as in the laying on of hands or the black sacrament.
It’s a ceremony but like any other sport it’s full of rules.
It’s like a musical tennis match where my mouth keeps catching the ball.

Then I lie on; my altar elevated by the eight chemical kisses.
What a lay me down this is with two pink, two orange, two green, two white goodnights.

Now I’m borrowed.
Now I’m numb.


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