The tiny green glass bottle rests upon the dusty chest of drawers, well and surely away from my nightstand. It’s where I once kept the precious tablets, cut into halves, that I had saved for a rainy day, when a little extra help would be a boon. These halves came from skimming a few whole ones out of a newly prescribed bottle, then cutting them up for clandestine storage. Thinking the doctor would not notice that I was in the habit of renewing a few days early, on occasion. Sleeping drugs. Hypnotics. Prescribed nearly five years back, but apparently not meant for steady use. No one to blame, really, but me. Such a heavenly help, at first. Then the mind starts to look on them as crack. The trouble was, the rainy days would come more and more often, and the little green wings were following me with the first flush of a promise. Convincing me that the extra help would be so soothing and sure. The waking dreams were drawn vividly with an artist’s brush, and always lead down the gently sloping road to deep slumber. Hence the name hypnotics, as that is how the hypnotist would lead you. And so, I played a foolish game with myself for a time, keeping the little green things in their little glass bottle well away. Well away. Suspecting myself of automatic trancelike pilfering if they were by my side. The isolation worked well for a while, with my visits to the bottle coming only a couple of times in a week, but eventually, of course, I put it on my nightstand “for convenience”. Not long before it was every night. Then I knew I needed help.
Guilt and acknowledgement of addiction came swiftly.
Now, the tiny green glass bottle rests back in its place, and contains slightly diluted dosages. In a month’s time, these will be lowered again, and, soon, if my willpower holds, I will have to sleep on my own. Fitfully, at first, I expect. But, I am determined to defeat the grinning Jester of addiction that showed me what a complete fool I could be.
Lee Dunn has been writing since the age of 18, but found that work got in the way for the ensuing 48 years. In his home town of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, he reveled in his independence at an early age, and spent as much time as he could exploring the city’s Arts scene. He was introduced to poetry and prose by the works of two literary giants, namely J.R.R. Tolkien and J.W. Lennon and thence fell in love with the written word. His work includes poetry, short fiction, and personal essays, and ranges in theme from the surreal to the horrific, nostalgic, and themes on the human condition. He has been published on Spillwords.com, The Dark Poets Club, Journal of Undiscovered Poets, Crepe & Penn Literary magazine, and the Shelburne Free Press.