nobody tells her how to spend her pay

so she thought nothing of passing a buck

to the youth – bronze with sun and dirt –

clutching his poverty and homelessness

scag*-dancing his way down Mainline St.


*scag = heroin 

© 2012, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved

Photo credit ~ circa WW I heroin bottle by Mpv51 via Wikipedia and released into the public domain.

One thought on “Scag Dancing

  1. Many years ago, I worked in the kitchen of a rehab center in downtown Seattle. We fed the charges “lunch lady style” as they came through for breakfast and lunch, or we took trays to the detox units and left them (usually untouched when we returned to collect them). By far, the worst cases were the heroin addicts. There was one woman in particular that I remember and often wonder about. She looked middle-aged or older, but I was told she was in her early twenties. Over the course of a little over a year, she would come, stay and then leave “clean” in a few weeks, but we always knew she would be back. I remember being amazed that she had the strength of will to keep trying, keep coming back to us to get clean again. It is a horrible demon and I wish there were an easier way to help those who fight it. Sorry for the rambling comment. Your poem reminded me of all that.


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