Saturday, March 19, 2016

Rock Star Human

Just learned recently that the rhythm guitarist for one of my favorite bands is in treatment for addiction. I've loved this band for over 10 years now, and this really hit me hard for whatever reason.

Rock Star Human

Playing rock god-style
night after night,
sneer curled in your lip
though your face looks at peace.
Sweat pours down as you hit
power chord after power cord
synchronized with the six other men on stage.

The show ends,
house lights come up in the venue,
adoring fans wait
for a handshake, autograph, or photo.
You slip off to backstage.

Back in your private room
You feel less like a legend
and increasing more human each night.
Open a bottle, take a swig,
the alcohol warms your throat
and numbs everything else.

Others watch you closely
as you slip further away.
Family, friends, fans
all see you in unwashed holey clothes.
You joke about being told that
‘you are letting yourself slip away.’

The time finally comes
when those who love you,
who have seen you grow
from a skiny skinhead teenager
into a man,
can’t watch your descent any longer.
They gather around you
and plead for you to truly look at yourself
and see that you need help.

Onstage your band plays on
without you.
Every night when your frontman tells the audience
why your aren’t by his side right now
we can feel the love and concern
and how much they can’t wait for you to be better again.

So many people root for you,
knowing the struggle personally
or remembering how addiction played out in their lives.

We can’t wait to see you again,
playing rock god style with your band,
stronger than when you left us for a short while.


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