In a fit of creative energy, I composed a book on prayer.
I was so busy with prayer that I made no time to pray.
I started a book on faithful fathering;
Alice took Sarah to a friend’s.
They were gone three days.
When they returned, I fell into a deep despair,
Sleeping days, staying up all night.
A friend recommended his psychiatrist,
Who prescribed pills—
A new generation of anti-depressants.
Not your mother’s Valium, I was assured.
With prayer and pills, God and therapy,
I found some relief.
Released, we conceived again –
Our graceful pilgrim,
Our pilgrimage led East – to Pennsylvania.
I became pastor of a heavily-endowed church
Looking for an infusion of youthful zeal,
A young pastor to do the trick.
I was full of myself, but little else.
When growth was slow, I fell down in despair.
And looked to a new drug to pick me up.
Effexor did just that—
It picked me up and kept me up for six solid days and nights.
Street signs became messages from God.
Ideas became revelations.
Feverous with a mission, not to assuage but to save,
I started crying during sermons
And laughing when I was alone.
Alice took me to Clarion hospital.
As they fastened the door,
I started pacing the floor.
Sensing some signal.
It was the end of the world.
I was in the only safe haven left.
I had to break out and bring my family back.
I grabbed a plate full of sugar cookies.
And shoved them in my mouth.
Then I took off running toward the glass door,
Crashing into it with a loud BANG.
A crowd gathered around me,
I shoved them away and started running for another door.
They surrounded me and thought they had me subdued.
(Or so they told me later.)