How’d we move from pole to pole

Ignoring the all-important balance

Shaman shaking feather-trimmed

Rattler’s tails

Singing up to the skies

Suddenly, like time-warping,

Doctors with prescription meds

Creating multiple walking deads

Where’s the balance?


I don’t really see auras

I see life force

And I see it in your eyes

You really don’t want to die

But you continue to commit suicide

By prescription drugs


Chemicals are not always the answer

To better living

Break it down

Use your intelligence

Trust in yourself

Doses are meant to be adjusted

Not necessarily by the medical gods


I know so well

How hard life is

How sweet the soma from

Little white pills

How banishing reality

By swallowing chemical cocktails

Brings us into the okay world

Especially when we are the working poor

Agoraphobically, we must go out the door

Please, don’t give in


Where’s the balance?

WE are the balance

What’s right for our bodies

Isn’t necessarily right for others

Please don’t die



© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Live Science, prescription drug medicine




The medical community

Stole my secret power

Most of my life

Whether excited

Or experiencing strife

The beautiful rush of adrenaline

Filled my body

Enabling me to live my life

I used it not only for

Fight or flight

Its original evolutionary


But also for writing

Singing, exercise

Waking every morning


To face work


Drumming on the steering wheel

Speeding along the pre-dawn streets

Now, like Superman’s enemies

The chunk of kryptonite

Not green

But white

Has been removed

From the lead box

(Disguised as a pill bottle)

Its new name is beta-blocker

And it steals adrenaline

Slows down the heart

Like Superman

I feebly found the source

Struggled to return the remnant

Of my home planet

Into the container

And once again I could fly

See through walls of lies

But then

But then

So unlike Superman

Who always immediately recovered

The adrenaline was puzzled

Didn’t know what to do

Whacked-out roaming

Around my body’s myriad highways

So I took the kryptonite

Out of its protective box

But just a little

Just a little hit

To help my heart


My other secret power is

I am not afraid to die

(Though no lie, afraid of pain)

But I will not give away my adrenaline

Ever again

I search for the magic elixir

In the Earth:

Is it garlic, onion, cayenne?

Give me sweet epinephrine

Or give me oblivion…


© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: from the blog of kugelmass.wordpress.com



methamphetamine steppingstonecenter.org


Women & children & dogs waiting

Always waiting

For the man

What’s a woman to do…?



While cleaning spilled ground coffee

From the counter

With a knife edge,

Flashbacked to

The one time

A neighbor

Introduced me

To meth

Watched her

Draw straight lines

On a plexiglass cutting board

Using a razor blade

Her Borzoi hound also watched

As she fumbled around for a dollar bill

From a Gucci purse

Such a beautiful young woman

In a House-Beautiful apartment

How I wished I was her

And couldn’t understand

Why she wanted drugs

When her life was so much nicer

Than mine

She showed me how to snort the meth

Dollar bill conduit to paradise


Within minutes

I was yakking away

I get high from tylenol

So this was no surprise

We sat up the entire night

(Our men were, well, who knows where?)

Yakking away

Neither of us listened to the other

Until she said, “Let’s decorate your pad!”

Went to my apartment

Carrying rolls of psychedelic contact paper

That my neighbor placed on the walls

And then we hung

Indian spreads she no longer wanted

All over the ceiling creating

A bower for the bedding on the floor

(Who knew where he was anyway?)


Yakking away

Yakking away


And I kept thinking:

Someone please stop me

From talking

From walking

From wanting to scream and run

Hysterical laughter

Punctuating every comment


Heart racing

Stop this feeling and I swear

I will never do drugs again

And I didn’t

Well, maybe an occasional toke or two of

Weed for medical reasons

Like my gran with her bottle of booze

For medical reasons, she said

But rare, so rare

The natural state is best for me

Contemplation, not yakking

One of the few smart decisions

I made in my life…

© 2015 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: www.steppingstonecenter.org