Distant Shadows

Distant shadows, I hear you call
If you come closer, will I take the fall?
You are the darkness I hold dear
I know you so without a fear
You sing your songs to me
I listen to your words intently

Distant shadows, can you hear me too?
There is something so familiar about you
You sing to me a desperate serenade
I sometimes think, for you I was made
You will always hold me close to you
If that is what I choose to do

Distant shadows, can you see?
The space I’ve put between me and thee
Darkness makes it hard to see
Lord please light a path for me
As fear sometimes envelopes me
Yet you can feel me breaking free

Distant shadows, I am not sure what to do
Torn between to stay or walk away from you
I feel you try to pull me in
This is the way it always begins
Though I feel you reach for me
I found a better place to be

Distant shadows, I hear you sing
But peace and comfort, you no longer bring
Distant shadows, I hear your lies
So now I bid you this goodbye
There is a place that waits for me
That is better than you will ever be
Distant shadows, I hear you call
But this time I won’t take the fall.
Katherine Spitzer

#poetry #life #recovery #addiction #trauma #ptsd

A Speck of Sorrow

A drop glistens
In the light
Of the day
Slowly taking form
Is a speck of sorrow
That almost burns
Searing into the skin
On the side
Of her cheek
The pain
Of the misery
Broken over time
By a giant void
Lost love
Pain that bleeds
Stifling breath
A weight of
Insane proportions
A wide open hole
Tears that burn
Searing the skin
Of her cheek
In complete misery.
Katherine Spitzer

#poetry #life #depression #pain

The Last Time

Oddly strange how little was said
The last time that ours eyes met
When my heart broke all apart
Because I could not reach yours
The overwhelming feeling of defeat
Fading into the darkness of my retreat
The grey that covered your steel- blue eyes
When I stared into them for the very last time
All of your spirit had long since slipped away
I watched as you turned your back on me
Oh how badly I wanted to be wrong
But you were, already gone
Tears fell as I drove away
But I could form no words to say
I watched the sun tumble out of the sky
But I could not say goodbye
All these years underneath the weight
From the guilt of being just a little too late
I was too young to be that strong
Too young for you to rely on
You were the Hero of this child’s life
Until you were consumed by strife
There was nothing I could do
But I so desparately wanted to save you
I know today that is not my place
Because Peace is given with God’s grace
I know that your demons have set you free
So in death you may rest peacefully
I am loving you with every inch of my heart
The way I will until I have departed
Hopefully, in Heaven you will look my way
As finally there will be nothing left to say
Yet now missing you for my days that remain.
Katherine Spitzer

#suicide #depression #broken #grief

This poem is about the last time I looked my big brother in the eyes. I was 16 and I knew he was going to die. This was Sunday afternoon, and they found him on Friday. The coroner said it had likely been gone for 3 days, but he put 2 on the certificate.

My parents used me as their pawn to try to get him to open his door so they could pounce on him.

So little was known about mental illness. 34 years later the way the world treats people with about as much compassion as they did then. Which I think is complete Bullshit. The facilities themselves are the oldest hospital wings on the planet. WHY??? Is it because we are “too sick or delusional to know the difference”.
I was not much beyond 13yo when the police came to “deal with” my brother. My mom had taken offense to something, called 911 and reported that he was acting erratically. I believe that my mom had wanted to teach him a lesson, because I remember her saying something to the effect of “well I’ll show you”.
I don’t know why, At this point, he barely put 5 words together at one time. In fact, he barely spoke 5 words in a day. He was so drugged up with anti-psychotics.
The cops literally chased him around the living and dining room, until they caught him, then sat on him, until he was hogtied. The whole time he was screaming, and crying (& so was I) and then 2 officers carried him out of the house.

I have never talked about those terrifying minutes, detailing the emotions, but it deeply scarred me, like much of the final 4 years and 10 months of his life…. and the aftermath, I am still working on

Be kind, stay blessed, and thank you for being here, ❤️ Kat

Eight

Here’s a little memory
About a child’s fate
The Saga of a little girl
And we will call her Kate
Events in life that changed her
When she was only eight

Having fun as time passed by
But it was getting late
1 more sale almost home
The competition great
In the lead and number one
And she was only eight

Up the street and over 1
Was a sale super great
The family that lived there
Back in 1978
She walked up the driveway happily
Would she sell six boxes or 8

The boy said Mom’s here
Step inside and wait
She stepped inside nervously
Then in a frantic state
As the top latch was secured
And she was only eight

They chased her to and fro
Back and forth and straight
Desperation taking hold
As she tried to escape
It seemed slim with four of them
And she was only eight

Kate followed their demands
Wanting out she wanted to escape
Wishing she could go home
Instead they sealed her fate
It’s hard to explain to anyone
Being raped when you are eight
Katherine Spitzer
#poetry #trauma #ptsd

      PAIN in a Picture

What would pain look like if you could paint or draw a picture…

My twin brother, Colin, was 11 years old when he put PAIN on paper for me.  I can look at this picture for hours. While I am not my brother, my perspective comes from being the  same fragile age, with eyes that were witness to life in our home.

   By Colin Andrew Hilsmann (1982)       11 years old – 1st Place.                 Washington Square Mall, Portland, OR

TRIGGER WARNING – Please take care of your mental health and be aware that this post contains true stories of Child Abuse and violence against children resulting in death. If this is a topic that is may be too close to home or is simply just not within your comfort level, please SKIP this post. Your OWN PERSONAL mental health is truly more important than my post.

At 11, you are FRAGILE.  You are going from elementary to middle school, a transition from being the oldest to the youngest of classmates.  That transition from 6th to 7th, is an extremely vulnerable time for kids. 12 year olds do not have the maturity of upper classmates that are 14 to 15. Their hormones are not at the same level, their motivations are not the same and hopefully their life experiences are not the equal because they have been sheltered from “real life”      

God, I wish we had been sheltered, protected, and allowed to remain innocent just a little longer.  

At the age of 10, we were rocked when our classmate, co-ed soccer teammate, playmate and good friend from 1st grade on, Joseph “Joey” Kuehl died in the night from a brain aneurysm. We saw the ambulance outside his home while we road our bikes past his house on the way to school. Nothing could have protected us from reality that death could reach out and snatch us from the world at any moment.

In 4th grade, I was 9, my friend Johnny was here one day and gone the next. We never spoke about it but I knew that he was being abused by his father. We played together every day he was allowed. For an entire month or more, he was made to completely ignore my presence, his little sister was able to tell me briefly that he couldn’t risk going against his dad. His mom, sister and he fled their home in the night while their dad was at work. I went up to his house and knocked on the door, his dad answered and I asked for Johnny, his dad said he was gone, “they are all gone”.  The following day, I was pulled out of class and told to go to the principal’s office. An Oregon State Trooper was waiting to question me. You are Johnny’s best friend, What did I know, what had Johnny said about leaving, did he say goodbye, where did he tell me they were going, You do know its wrong to lie to the Police… I have no idea what ever happened to Johnny, but I do know that they got away.

Then came Sunday, May 3, 1982. My friend, Wendy Ann Harris, left her home, walked around the corner and Vanished   

Wendy Ann Harris, age 11

It was approximately 6:00 pm on a quiet Sunday Evening. Wendy’s destination was 6, SIX houses away. Most of the “corners” were just curves in the road. No one saw a thing, you know how the story goes, things like that don’t happen here, until they do. Wendy wanted to drop off a picture at a friend’s home. Her friend wasn’t home but the friend’s 15 year old stepbrother was, and when questioned, told police that Wendy had never arrived.

Cedar Mills From Above

The following day, when we arrived at school, we got the news. At 6 pm on a Sunday night, kids were inside having dinner, and baths to get ready for the next week. It was still light outside, this time of year, it was not usually dark before 8-8:30 p.m.  It was an innocent thing to do and she should have been completely safe.

We went to bed totally oblivious to what was happening just a few miles away, but it would be the last night of sound sleep we would have for quite some time. Sadly kids going missing in the late ’70s and early ’80s wasn’t really considered “NEWS” worth reporting on TV.

Wendy’s Class Picture

Wendy was a very bright and friendly kid. She was fun and we laughed a lot. I never saw her be negative or mean to anyone ever. She was kind, loving and a friend.

The Bluffs, were the homes on the hill above ours, and we were separated by a huge farm that was on a busy road. The kids from that neighborhood were far enough from the school that they had to ride the bus to school. The Bluffs were a new subdivision that was developing over the previous couple of years. New homes meant more families, as well as, more kids. Because of increased class sizes, at the end of 5th the district was rezoned. Beginning 6th grade, all of our friends in the Bluffs went to a different school. Although we didn’t see each other daily, Wendy was still my friend. Besides, we all knew that we would all be reunited in 7th grade at the Jr. High School. If Only… the world wasn’t so cold, so cruel, and so random.

Monday, May 4th, the 3 TV stations were reporting news of a missing girl from Cedar Mills. We were just children. We certainly could not be affected by something so terrifying as a child, whom we knew and played with, our age, could just vanish. It would be generous to say this was within a 4 mile Radius. We were required to go to school and behave like everything was fine, but it wasn’t. In addition, no teacher or school district psychologist, ever sat down with us to talk about how we felt. No one ever attempted to prepare us for the possibilities. We were left to use our own resources. Reading the newspaper and listen to the news reports, as well as our classmates chatter and the unfiltered mumblings of the adults around us of the rumors.

Late on Tuesday night, the 5th, or in the early morning hours of Wednesday, the 6th, the police received a call regarding Wendy’s disappearance. A female had called in and stated that she believed that her boyfriend might be involved.

The female said that she had broken up with her boyfriend on Saturday, and Sunday night he called and said “look at what you made me do, you made me so angry that I had to hurt something, and she was right in front of me. Now she is DEAD, because of you.”

The female was Keri K. and her boyfriend was Eric Merrill, the 1st person police spoke to, once Wendy was reported missing on Sunday. He was the 15 year old who answered the door at Wendy’s friend’s house, 6 doors away from the safety of her own home.

The Murderer invited her, and by telling her that her friend was indeed home, successfully tricking her. Once Wendy stepped inside, he blitz attacked her, knocking her unconscious. He then dragged her limp body down into the basement to his bedroom. He grabbed his hockey stick and beat her to death with it. Then stuffed her into a garbage bag and under the cover of darkness, carried Wendy’s body into the nearby woods where we played as kids. She remained there for the next 3 days, while he went to school like nothing ever happened.  Taking the 3 broken pieces of hockey stick, still cover in blood, brain matter and Wendy’s hair, to school and put them inside his assigned school locker.

Keri K. was the 14 year old girlfriend, who reported the murderer’s confession to the police, told them where they could find the murder weapon. They found it in his locker and arrested him. He told police where they could find her body, and the search for Wendy Ann was over on Wednesday May 6, 1982.

Never Again, have I been the same person that I was on the afternoon of Sunday May 3, 1982.  To consider the fact that someone who was just a few years older than us, as well as, the same age as some of our own siblings, was capable of doing something so abhorrent. I don’t think anyone of us who knew Wendy, could ever look at this world the same way.

How could we ever be the same???

The murderer pleaded not guilty in the Juvenile Justice System for the State of Oregon. When he was 16, he was declared guilty. But because he was 3 months shy of his 16th birthday, he could not be sentenced as an adult. Instead he was sent to an Oregon State reform school.

His sentence was to be held there until his 21st Birthday. He was let out just in time to celebrate his 21st birthday at the bar with his family and friends.

Juvenile Court does not have a supervised parole for crimes including Murder, when the perpetrator is under 16 at the time of the crime. They just open up the door and let them walk away.

They have no criminal record from the Juvenile System — P E R I O D – – – NONE.  Regardless to whether or not they are “reformed”. They are 100% free, and there is no warning signs attached that point out to society that they are any different than you or I.

How About That for getting away with the ABSOLUTELY Viscous Murder of an 11 year old child

Wendy Ann Harris 1970   FOREVER 11

The Other Side of Me

I wrote this poem many years ago. I ❤️ it, because it was 100% true.
I am sharing again for my new followers.
I ❤️ feedback. Can you relate to any part of it… Have you ever felt this way? Please let me know. Thank you for being here and stay blessed. ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

There’s a secret that I hide
When you look at me
The story that hides inside
The other side of me

When you see me laugh and play
The smiles that you see
Really only hide the truth
The other side of me

The funny things that I do
That make me seem carefree
Only hide the tears I cry
The other side of me

The jokes I tell to make light
So you cannot see
The fears behind the mask
The other side of me

I hide the ugly with a laugh
So I can deceive
The pain, the torment and the fear
The other side of me

If I’m willing to take a chance
There’s truth in front of me
Can I trust in these new things
With the other side of me

Can I look to the sky
After the awful things I’ve seen
To trust in the Lord’s graciousness
For the other side of me

If I look to the Lord
Forgiveness waits for me
The bondage of a childhood
The other side of me

I want to be a happy child
God watching over me
So all that hides the other side
Can finally be set free.

Katherine Spitzer

An Old Companion

This is a poem from many years ago, struggling with
my addiction. Repost

An old companion
Down the hall
I cannot abandon
I hear it call
Standing silent
Looking back at me
To be defiant
I cannot be
It’s gentle urging
For my return
As I am purging
I feel the burn
A spell of silence
So very loud
Once reliant
Cannot be found
A memory
Of sweet embrace
Has now become
A relentless chase
The acid sears
My every breath
Until there is
Nothing left
My friend, my friend
I hear you call
You, I will defend
Throughout it all
A tiny bottle
From the past
Here in denial
This chance, my last
For the love
Of my destruction
It is enough
Your sweet seduction
It’s my turn
To form a plan
To ensure
One last stand
My friend, my friend
Time cannot recall
Without your hand
Will I take the fall
The bottle I hold
In my grasp
A story told
Of the past
My heart is breaking
From the pain you bestow
There’s no mistaking
You have hurt me so
I cannot trust
In you, so
Now I must
Let you go
My friend, my friend
Please set me free
For until the end
You will deceive.
Katherine Spitzer
#poetry #life #addiction#eating disorder

The River

I held out my hand true
Tempted to believe
That the leverage might be enough for you
Knowing all along, I am naive
I always hope for skies of blue
But that hope is often deceived
As you were so dead set to prove
My eyes could hardly believe
The tantrums that you threw
How you screamed and stomped your feet
Like a child with the terrible two’s
With an incessant need
As a child that just left the womb
Your presence made it hard to breathe
While the Chaos of your shadow loomed
Your years numbered thirty three
darkness of impending doom
From your every pore it seeped
More and more I withdrew
As regret enveloped me
Facing the fact I already knew
The one that I deceived, was yours truly.
January 25, 2022