In The December Grey

after Satan laughs
it begins
there will be no Vicodin today

In the parking lot a shadowy figure mumbled a kind of

hello. At first I thought him a hallucination, but with the

sun breaking through the bleakness and codeine deprivation


vice-gripping my brain, I recognized Gary’s black onyx ring

loosely fit on his crooked right ring finger. How I hated him, once

a friend, now a specter, a haunting reminder of when my boys

were young and I still called Fran my wife.

more ghosts jump from
a worn Altoid’s tin

Gary lit a hand rolled cigarette; desolation swirled around his acrid plume.

I breathed in the heaviness; I exhaled a tired breath.




sweat, chills… damned this crawling skin


Why a computer programmer chose to rob banks after his divorce, I’ve no

answer. Eight years in a Michigan prison, a lifetime… shit, prison life is an

oxymoron; his soul’s forever an inmate. His children, his friends, all moved on.


I knew this about Gary…


$40 for 20mg

Satan accepts credit

Gary doesn’t


And my lockup is measured in cravings, milligrams, broken promises and

disillusioned children — mine, Fran’s, ours. There will be no Vicodin today,

I am broke… broken in the December grey.

© chuck a stetson 2012


Filed under poetry, Uncategorized

2 responses to “In The December Grey

  1. Hey Chuck..I nominated you for any one of 6 awards–you’re that great…:) Please come by and grab your meme!

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