Mother Never Told Me

My mother once told me
That “you never really see
How toxic someone is
Until you breathe fresher air,”
But never mentioned
What comes after.

When he wasn’t toxic in the sense of
City smog, or exhaust from cars,
But of cigarette smoke and whiskey
In dimly lit bars
When you know you should have left
At least two drinks ago,

But it’s all so warm-
And feels so right-
That you don’t even bother to put up a fight
Against the poison coursing through your veins
As it turns your blood to fire-

Because this-
This is what the world has taught us
Passion feels like.

So we clench our fists tight
And hold on for dear life-
Even with our shaking hands
And sweating palms,

Because some addictions are just too sweet to break-
So we let them kill us instead,
And always with a smile…
And mother never told me that.

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