outgrowing my mentor.jpg



I sat at your feet;

metaphorically, of course, only metaphorically;

as I remember it, I sat on the couch,

as you, with your strangely lilting voice,

held my hand and walked me through;






the pitiless steps of the reverent ritual.




You were so gentle

as you wrapped the tourniquet around my bicep;

laughed at the expression on my face

pinched the crook of my arm

to bruise and raise a vein.

and as you slid the needle in and we watched the blood

cloud the water inside,


you apologized, profusely,


for the infinitesimal pinprick


that precedes the rapture.




I swore to you,

in that ghastly and gorgeous moment,

this is how it would always be;


that you would be there,


by my side, every time,


to guide me down the path of night.

but like the other oaths that passed between us,

this too, was a hopeful lie.




The day came, as it was




destined to do,

that you were gone;

selling yourself

in the fashion required

for you to get by;

and the pull of oblivion

proved stronger, by far,

than either love or trust or art,


so I took the syringe and


taught myself


not to need you anymore.