Bill's Poem - Paradise Lost (And Found)

Paradise Lost

(and found)


Where did I go for all those years?

Causing the ones I love much pain and tears.


It was a lonely journey, my decent into hell.

It broke my mind and left my body a shell.


But in the midst of the madness and the delusion,

I ended up in a place called inclusion.


It was there I spoke freely about my depression

To a lady called Dee with trust and discretion.


As I slurred out my issues she listened in silence.

She understood about the drink, drugs and violence.


It was through this service that I would discover

A place called ANA where I could recover.


Gratefully funded it was time to leave.

It started in primary with a three month reprieve.


The people there cared but didn’t even know me though.

They were my counsellors Toni and Romeo.


I told my life story, emotionless, unthawed.

I was told my thinking was seriously flawed.


Introduced to the steps I initially resisted

But thanks to Toni I stayed and persisted.


I was taught some tools to help in my life

To keep me clean without trouble and strife.


I learnt that I had the disease of addiction,

A pretty shitty incurable affliction.


But if I followed a programme and got on with the steps,

Trusted the process I would see the effects.


I listened to the shares through H and I.

It gave me hope to give abstinence a try.


As I became more comfortable with a higher power,

things fell into place and I gained faith by the hour.


Finally I graduated and got funding for Secondary.

I met Alan and Vicky whose reputation was legendary.


The transition was foreign and made me delirious.

I knew from day one – here recovery was serious.


I was taken apart and slowly rebuilt

to no longer feel all the shame and guilt


They made me realise my addicts not me.

I can learn to ignore it. Without it I’m free.



My blocks to recovery began to crumble.

They gave me courage and made me humble.


Freed form the fear and crippling anxiety

I was given more tools to take on society.


I’m still keeping my guard up and not taking things lightly

because my addicts not far and still wants to fight me.


So I’ve joined a fellowship and found a sponsor and together we’ll continue to battle my monster.


My parents and children need no longer concern,

my addicts in remission while I make my return.


My future is bright and viewed optimistically.

I’m re-establishing myself but not egotistically.


This journeys been long, trying and testing

but with my new friends it’s been truly a blessing.


I’m eternally grateful I’ve now found my way,

but I’ll always remember it’s just for today!


A poem by Neil and his addict Bill.

Rob Williams - Bless You My Child

Come see, let's travel, just you and me.

Let's go far and wide, on a journey that's free.

Imagine the door that you close as we leave.

And onto the street, the beginning - we're free.


So where will we go to, let's walk you and me.

Shall we sit on a bench, and imagine .... where to be?

There's one over there, let's sit by the tree.

We can draw up a plan or, go with the flow and just be.


The rest of our road, sometimes winding ...... or straight.

The choice can be ours - never on time, early ...... or late.

We can walk, we can jog, even get there by bus.

It don't really matter, as long as there's us.


C'mon, let's go, there's a hill up ahead.

You know when we've climbed it, we'll both feel half dead 😁

I will go first, you can come after.

You can cushion my stumbles with humour and laughter 😂


On the way down, we can change places.

We can both tumble, with smiles on our faces

We can laugh😁 ‘til we cry😢 and cry into laughter😂

Not a care in the world, in a moment's ever after.


At the bottom a beach, a forest or meadow.

Where we can just lay ... and look up feeling mellow.

The clouds they pass over, our heads, they're all scattered.

Some they look thick, whilst others look scattered.


When we sit up, it's a beach, on which we sit.

The sand it is golden, soft, and not grit.

Sun on the horizon, going down for the night.

It's golden glow hazy,  but still pretty bright


Close my eyes gently, my ears to the sea.

The ebb and flow licking the sand next to me.

My eyes when I open .... A forest so grand,

Large and expansive as it covers the land.


I think of the animals that live with the trees.

The deer and the venison to the birds and the bees.

The forest holds vastness and diverse life within.

Let's go and explore it - come on, let's begin.


Soon into a meadow, we gallop ..... or skip.

Oh what an adventure, a beautiful trip.

We can rest here some time, lay down or sit.

Hold hands for a while, physically connect for a bit.


I have missed you my child although you're within.

How do I love you, oh where to begin.

You're shy and reserved, your talents you hide.

Come out of the shadows and own them with pride.

 Bless you my child.

Anna H - An Ode to “Heroin”

The turmoil of life by a drug called “Heroin”
Boy! This one really hits you on the chin!
Smack, Scag, Brown and Gear,
it’s all the same so listen here,
A tiny amount of this certain ‘Brown Powder’,
causes a huge amount of destructive power!
Once you come across this drug,
it holds you like an eternal hug.
It will never let you go,
then the pain and misery begins to show.
Everything you have-you start to lose,
as this drug starts to unleash it’s abuse.
It doesn’t have a heart and it doesn’t have a brain,
but it plays with your life like it is a game!
From the first time you pick up you are in trouble,
life starts crashing down like bricks and rubble!
You start to lose your family and friends,
as you continue to go around the bend.
So you sit back and watch as life goes past,
It’s like a flash! It goes so fast!
From the moment you wake up until you go back to sleep,
this drug will surely keep you on your feet!
If at first you start to smoke it,
it won’t be long before you want to poke it!
When you start to feel the hit,
maybe at first you might feel sick,
but when the buzz starts to set in,
then the gouching out begins!
Then you struggle to find a vein,
and that can drive you totally insane!!
Now I’m covered in lumps and bruises,
how could I be so blind and stupid?
When you start to feel your first cluck,
and you think to yourself “What the Fuck”,
Your money’s all gone but you need your next hit,
the pain and sweats start and you feel sick.
Lies and crime then pave the way,
from the minute you wake til the end of the day!
When you can’t even afford to eat,
you start to realise you are beat,
and it really brings you to your feet!

Anna H
July 2007

Antonio Pancadas - Nothing is as hard as the beginning of things

Nothing is as hard as the beginning of something… a relationship, a book, a painting, a journey, its beginning and its end. That first step that forces the second and the third.

After the roll is established things kind of take care of themselves;

and this is nothing more than my opinion at this point in time, and I mention this point in time because things change with time.

Time changes things but at the same time, time only exists because there is change. If there was no change at all, time would not exist.


Just imagine me…at this point I am just laughing, thinking about whoever is reading this and I am picturing that person thinking what in fact I am thinking at this moment:

“What the hell is he talking about?”

I came over to ANA due to a set of circumstances in my life that forced me to do something, and one of the options was rehab.

Ten years ago I went into a rehab in London and managed to get clean and stay clean for over a year but then… relapse happened. It took me another ten years of my life to get here again, to be clean and some would say that God only knows for how long this is going to last. Well, I would say that it will last for as long as I it want to, and that is the reality of it.

Nobody is forcing me to do anything and the same applies to all of us, the decision is always ours.

I know it is very easy for me to talk now; when the pain, diarrhoea, sleepless nights, head loop, frenzy, desperation, frustration, anger, hate, sweats, madness, physical and psychological disarray, etc., etc., are gone.

To be honest I don’t even want to think about it.

All I knew, was that I had a chain around my neck and I was a slave, and I desperately wanted to break free from those chains but couldn’t. For some reason, for some mad reason, I could not stop using and yet I could…but I couldn’t.

Some of you will know what I am talking about.

I had tried and failed before, so my life was lined up and that was it, I might as well accept it and get on with it…

For whatever reason I ended up trying again and I am over a year clean, back in college, doing voluntary work, living in my flat and happy as I can not remember being, and all because I gave it another chance.

Things happen, life moves on and things change. And there is Time…

Good luck to all of you…

Antonio Pancadas
October 2005