the little boy is holding his mothers hand tightly, his five year old mind cannot begin to wrap itself around the situation, he just does not know why there are five Antioch police cars parked outside, and police snapping pictures of the parrot who is laid upon a white sheet that is draped over his kitchen table., the little boy grips his mothers hand tightly, and looks up at his mother, who is crying hysterically, tears smearing the black eyeliner she so proudly displayed earlier that day. "David, im so sorry it will be ok" she squeezes his little hand, which is a bit sticky from the charms blow pop he had eaten that day. the little boy looks at his mother with a reassuring smile, his brown eyes peerierg through sandy blonde hair, "its OK mommy, the parrots still alive, his eyes are open mom" he says confidently, his mother breaks down grabbing him and hugging him, as she realized how bad of a night it was going to be,
" So many things I wanted to do differently", she thought to herself, as she prepared a joint, cutting the cannabis with a pair of scissors, her brown hair feathered on each side in standard 80s fashion. every strand held still by a liberal amount of aqua net. her son David now sleeping in his favorite glow in the dark star wars pajamas, clinging onto his favorite bedtime story like it was a teddy bear, his little brother mikey is sleeping on the bottom bunk, both kids putting on a fantastic display of children s resilience. She takes another look in at her children. kissing each boys forehead as she pulls the blankets to there necks, turns around, closes the door, and lights the joint, takes a long pull, holds the smoke in her lungs and exhales. She nervously begins to fig it with her hair, twirling her hair with her finger, the breathes in deep again, holding the smoke in , feeling as the smoke expands in her lungs, and her mouth begins get dry, she exhales feeling the subtle changes in her senses,
She puts her head in her hands," oh sherry what are you going to do", her voice in a low whisper, this is a question she would ask a lot over the years. she puts her head back and closes her eyes." When did this all start" she thinks to herself, already knowing the answer. Its something she thinks about everyday, but never talks about, something she only thinks about when her sons cant see her, late at night, when the beers are opened and the weed is heavy in the air. Only on nights like tonight, does she allow her mind to wonder back to south dakota, back to the windy highway near the town of geddys, a sprawling town of about fifty people. Back to the last time she saw her, the last time she was loved as a child should be, the last day where she was able to be a kid, she takes a deep breath and she can feel the icy air grab her lungs.
that day in geddys would be the first time someone in her family had decided to end there own life, but not the last. Her eyes force open," No,no,no" she says to herself, snapping herself out of her memory, she picks up her can of Budweiser, and finishes another beer. She begins to let her mind go over the days events, trying to make sense out of something that makes no sense. why would her boyfriend, who seemed so sweet, be so cruel, how could someone do that to a pet, let alone in front of the kids, how could he? great the tears again, she thought to herself as little drops of water begin to roll down her face, for the second time today. she begins to go over the days events to herself, "okay, so my boyfriend comes over to watch v with me and the boys, i left the room, I hear David screaming, I come back into the room, and Jeff is holding a dented bicycle pump, with a small smear of blood on it' she thinks to herself again, " what happened" she thought to herself, why would a grown man kill a kids pet in front of him, what does that prove "?, this would also not be the last time she has to ask this question.
David and Mikey woke up the next day as if nothing happens, that's the thing about children of alcoholic parents, they tend to act and think a bit like an adult. Mikey was a very sweet child, with an innocence that despite being in some unbearable situations, never lost. his blonde hair dangling over his dark brown eyes. His skin is a bit lighter then his older brothers, due to having different fathers. mikey didn't talk too much, he spoke in a studder when he did, , David on the other hand was most certainly not a quiet kid,not by any stretch of the imagination, from a young age David seemed to adore talking, and having conversations with anybody. Every time he saw the mail man he would chime in with a " what are you doing? always followed by Why?? They always argued, constantly, along with being a talker, David was also a bit temperamental, and could be down right mean sometimes. He never intended to be a mean kid, but David was not blessed with the best anger management skills, there mother would play a referee between them for years to come.
Days then weeks, and then months went by, and life felt pretty good for the children, spending there days playing, reading, and trading baseball, and football cards. They lived in an apartment, in antioch, When it was only mom and the kids, the boys were in heaven. Sherry was a good mom, she always put the kids before herself. The boys always had food, and she would spend a great deal of time, teaching them about sports, which she felt was important due to them not having a father figure around. This was a very happy peaceful time for them all, summer was spent playing stick ball, riding the bart train to the Oakland Colosseum for the A's games, and the boys loved catching Crawdads at the Creek, sometimes horrifying there mother with full buckets of crawdads when they came back. Yes it was a very peaceful time for the Children, one of the few peaceful times that I remember, my first memory was my parrot, my pet, my friend, being murdered by one of my mothers boyfriends, yes my name is David, the little boy inside me did not die that day, but he was wounded.
It forever stayed with me, the memory of that day, in fact when I think about it I can remember everything after that moment, almost my awakening. like my baptism into violence, the slap that triggered my memory, I often do wish I had a mind that could block the bad things out, and have never understood peoples urge to go into hypnosis to find the things that were repressed, I would keep thees memories buried If I could. Oh well I guess we are all blessed with different ways of handling stress, I write, always have. Its strange but for me, when I write poetry its almost as if I am not the one writing it, this has always been a mystery to me, kinda a riddle of sorts that I have not figured out yet. I sit back, and put a pen in my hand, and it comes out, people often ask me how I can write so effortlessly in rhyme, I really do not have an answer for them, wish I did, in the crazy life that I was born into I feel that an answer might lay somewhere in that, but I doubt it.
My name is David Gregory, at this moment I am thirty two years old and the parent of three children, they are my success, my inspiration and my light that guides my life, without them I am a wreck, after a week, I feel an indescribable void, an emptiness that hurts so bad its unnerving. Without them I would have died a long time ago, there is no question of that, none at all. Also I am a former Junkie, this is something that hangs over my head like a black cloud, a shame that no matter how many years go by I have never shaken it. I am five ft. ten inches tall, and currently weigh in at one hundred and forty four pounds. usually I have a light brown hair color, almost with a tint of blonde and red when the sun hits it just right. I Have lots of scars, I will get into why later in this story, I guess if one were to judge me at glance you might see me as a dark person, actually I am not a dark person, and I feel so much empathy for other people that I often have to distance myself from them.
I have lost many things over the last three years, family, friends, and some would argue my mind, although I disagree with the later. I have gone through so much, in so few years, I was two hundred and fifteen pounds three years ago, now I weigh less then I did in middle school, my eating habits have also changed, eating is not something I spend a great deal of time doing lately. Things have changed so quickly that the former life I used to live seems like a dream, like a fantasy that I know is gone forever. its the little things you miss when your marriage falls apart, I miss the sound of my kids playing in the bedroom, watching T.V and getting stoned with the person you love, Laughing all night, going to the park, this can be very deceiving. Often I have noticed myself getting lost in those few happy memories, and forgetting how I was also unbelievably unhappy, and she was as well. I have learned to except that both of us are at fault, I cant hold a grudge, I am no better then she is, and despite all the things she has done to hurt me I will always love her, sad but true.
if I think back on it, everything I knew about reality changed, everything I was fell into a million pieces about three years ago, I think that a peaceful world may be lost to me forever. My childhood was not easy, but I have figured out how to deal with those memories, but the reality is I will never recover from the loss of Mikey.... its like being lost in a horrible dream that never ends, almost like a tunnel of terror at times. At night I see no peace, each night brings nightmares, I seem to be lost in a moment in time, and no matter what I do i cant move past it. Thanks to my severe case of post traumatic stress disorder, i live in a constant state of fight or flight, and my family raised me to never knack down, never run away. i used to be pretty cruel with peoples mental issues, often getting angry at people for there disorders, more of an example of how I cant be rational all the time. A suicide is no funny thing, I tell you this, its a plague, a cancer that explodes and destroys everyone it comes in contact with. My family will never be the same, and I know that I have literally been hanging by a thread since, I will go into this day a bit later, but to understand this you must know Mikey.