The Pusher

Posted: March 23, 2016 in Friday Fictioneers
Tags: , ,

My 93-word contribution to Friday Fictioneers is a bit bleak this a.m. It reminds me of the way our rental house looked after the first renters moved out – I kid you not. Many people thought they were running a meth lab. Instead, one woman had become addicted to pain meds and begun chain smoking in the living room, coating all the interior walls with nicotine. To no avail, her partner tried to cover it up but broke into tears as we walked through the ruins. In the end, we sealed the walls with varnish to get rid of the odor. Enough said. Thanks to Ted Strutz for the photo and to the lovely Rochelle for posting it.

Toilet flowers

Come to me, run to me
This is my lair
Full of promises, at first
Flowers Sunshine Laughter
and Dreams

Soon I will not need to ask
You will beg to come
The smell of the smoke
The draw of the needle
The hiss of happiness in your veins

Others will join us
Pretty ones, sad ones
Young ones

But then we all become monsters
In the end
Do we not?

Our lives rust
and break
Our dreams turn to
Our bodies scream
No More!

Still, we come

  1. Dear Alicia,

    Bleak and wonderfully written.



    Liked by 1 person

  2. Really powerful, Alicia.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ceayr says:

    That is depressing.
    But very well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sandra says:

    Powerfully dark, Alicia. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Bleak and powerful – ‘the hiss of happiness in your veins’ stunning line.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Very evocative poem about the vicious trap of heroin addiction. I have never been addicted to heroin but I was addicted to cocaine, using 22 hours a day, also to alcohol and benzos. Because I was rampantly bulimic, vomiting 3 times a day, the doctors said every time I made myself sick on that quantity of cocaine I could have a fatal heart attack. But the cocaine had made me suicidal so I thought I wanted to die and the more risks I took the better. I’m sure I would have killed myself, or had a stroke, if my family hadn’t forced me into treatment at the beginning of 2005. Rehab worked, I decided I was going to get clean and have never picked up alcohol or drugs since then. I was 11 years clean at the beginning of this year.


  7. Dale says:

    That was brilliantly done. And I feel like I need to walk through a happy place…

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This is very good Alicia!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. rgayer55 says:

    It was hard to click the Like button, but it was so darn well written I couldn’t help myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Wow!
    well done, how addictive.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. “Our lives rust” Good description of the destruction from drugs. This is painfully good.


  12. mickwynn2013 says:

    All what others have said. Bleak, powerful, well written

    Liked by 1 person

  13. draliman says:

    Very dark, great stuff! I really liked the line “The hiss of happiness in your veins”.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Jan Brown says:

    This is a very good portrait of addiction. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Rea Ann Loomis says:

    Wonderful how you take life experiences, a crazy picture and connect them with your fantastic writing!

    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

    From:”Up From the Ashes” Date:Wed, Mar 23, 2016 at 7:46 AM Subject:[New post] The Pusher

    aliciajamtaas posted: “My 93-word contribution to Friday Fictioneers is a bit bleak this a.m. It reminds me of the way our rental house looked after the first renters moved out – I kid you not. Many people thought they were running a meth lab. Instead, one woman had become addi”


    • Thanks, Rea Ann, I always like it when you read my 100-words and comment. I couldn’t help but think of the Elm Street house when I saw the rust and broken toilet. Actually, I think the toilet was about the only thing that wasn’t broken inside the house.


  16. wmqcolby says:

    Love me some poetry, Alicia, and this is wonderful. Good metaphors. Seems like the poem was inspired by the rental property. Whether it was or not, it’s amazing how inspiration comes from all kinds of experiences. Like Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes said, “There’s treasure everywhere!”

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Thank you very much. Yep, the rental property was beyond nasty. The refrigerator was rusty on the outside as was the cookstove. Plus the stove looked like someone had danced on it – bent right in the center. How the heck does that happen? Anyway, glad you liked the poem that came out of the “drama.” Alicia


  18. plaridel says:

    just telling it as it is. great take on the prompt.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. ansumani says:

    A bleak piece but a good reminder of what will happen when we go down the path of addiction.

    The story of your rental home is sad – the partner breaking into tears must have been a sad sight to see.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Addiction must be wicked… Thanks for the comment about our rental home. It was sad in many ways because it was the first home my husband and I purchased. We’d rented the little 1910 bungalow for about seven years, bought it and lived there another five to seven years. There were many good memories within those walls, tainted by neglect. The partner tried VERY hard to clean it up, to no avail.


  20. liz young says:

    That’s a nightmare picture you paint of addiction. Your tale of nicotine walls rings true as well – I used to work in social housing.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Amy Reese says:

    Chilling, Alicia, and well written. The part of about all becoming monsters. Yes, so true. Then it’s all over and it’s hard to get back after that. Sorry about your house getting all smoked out.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Wow! Nice take on the symbolism in the prompt. Your words are powerful and sharp with warning.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. gahlearner says:

    What a powerful poem. Addiction is horrible. And I’m sorry about your rental.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. God Damn, the pusher man! Gripping, felt almost like I had a needle in my arm.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Adam Ickes says:

    Excellent poem. Very powerful. I had some friends who went down that road. Not a good road to be on.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. subroto says:

    ‘Still we come’ that last line just about sums it up. Powerful take about the perils of addiction.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. That’s a hard-hitting piece that makes addiction real, Alicia. What you went through with your renters was a renting nightmare. That nicotine smell is especially strong to a non-smoker. I know as neither my husband nor myself smokes. Well done. — Suzanne


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