Pandemic Poem #50 / The Gambler

Ding Ding Ding! With entry into Lockdown 5, I’ve racked up 50 Pandemic Poems. It’s not a prize I’m happy about winning.

This poem has been bubbling in my brain and dancing across my notebook for a month or so. I wanted to capture the feeling of being a “gambler” when in a manipulative/abusive relationship, which has some traumatic parallels to the way we’re forced to live now during this pandemic. I’ll probably keep working on it.

The Gambler

For ten years I went to sleep
hoping tomorrow could be the day
that I would get the best of him again
the taste of the three sweet cherries
he fed me once
was enough
to repeatedly pour my heart out
until I had nothing left
because sometimes, every now and again
I won

For three years I bet on myself
I reveled in the knowledge
that I don’t have to live like that anymore
and the penny kept dropping
turns out I’m a sure thing
the return on investment
was winning

For not yet two years 
I have relapsed
through no fault of my own
these circumstances are becoming more and more foreseen
and yet I roll the dice
for what else is there to live for
hoping for the best
hurts like heartburn
and the pit of my stomach turns sour
those three cherries
rotting in the bottom of the fridge
the week after [insert plan here]
was cancelled due to covid
and I only bought them for my guests
I don’t even like cherries
but they were on special
so I felt like I won

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