#52 Memoir I'm embarrassed to confess that I never treasured the natural things in life. Sunrise didn't mean beauty; it meant it was light enough to find a crime to commit. Should I go on so anyone can read about my worthless life and the measures that I took that I shouldn't have? Fate should have never let me exist, but it did, and I'm here. I want to write to tell everyone why I did what I did. Poverty is only a word. It means poor, but where I grew up it wasn't a lack of money that impoverished my neighbors, it was the demon that has destroyed many souls since the beginning of time. How different life would have been if that fiend had never been allowed to exist. What little money the working men of my neighborhood earned was spent on it, and any money I stole, also found its way to those who sold alcohol. Stupid I know, but when to exist is a chore and there's no brightness in the world, and no relief from physical or emotional pain, a bottle of booze was the only respite. Though it's a demon in disguise, it's often thought to be heaven sent by those in need. Alcohol erases hunger, memories, and any dreams one may have. It makes crimes easier to commit and allows a man to justify why he beats his wife or kids. “I was drunk,” was a refrain I often heard a man say when asked why he had done some foul deed. Robbed a bank, and when I got caught I told the judge, “I was drunk” and expected him to understand that it wasn't my fault, that the demon made me do it. All men knew that what we did under the influence was forgivable I believed. Evidently, the judge didn't. He gave me five years in jail. Locked away in a dungeon built in 1844, I needed my personal demon to help me, but deprived of alcohol. I had to make a deal with the devil, and gained a more powerful demon, one I'd not only steal for, but would do anything to keep the demon inside my head, healing all my hurts and worries. When released from prison, my new demon accompanied me. I robbed my mother the first day I was out. The demon told me to, and if I wanted to keep him with me, I had to do what he said. Next he told me to kill a man, so I'd be able to take what he had, and if I did that, I'd have what I'd need to keep my worries away. I got arrested. I told the judge, “I was high on heroin; it wasn't really me that killed that boy.” He didn't understand and sentenced me to death by lethal injection. Back in a dungeon, I suffered for weeks before the devil left me alone to live with my conscience. I saw all the wrong I had done. Was I sorry? No, I didn't blame myself for not knowing there was a better world. Am I scared to die? Will I go to hell? If I do, will I meet my demons there and enjoy eternity by having an altered state where everything wrong is right? The time has come. The Catholic Priest wants to hear my confession. I say, “Bless me father for I have sinned.” “Tell me your sins.” He made the sign of the cross as he spoke. “I trusted the judge to understand that it wasn't me who committed any crimes. It was the demon within.” “But we're responsible for our actions,” the priest said handing me some beads. “What about our so called free will. If I'm forced to do something by a demon, isn't it his fault and not mine?” “We can't blame another for our actions.” As he spoke I noticed the priest looked so much like me, he could have been my brother. “You do believe you'll go to heaven when you die, don't you father?” I walked to the sink in my cell where I kept the shiv I had made from a piece of broomstick I stole from a utility cart while prisoners cleaned my tier. “If I didn't believe that, I wouldn't have become a priest.” I looked up and down the tier. There were no guards in sight. “As you believe like that, if someone takes your life, they'll be doing you a favor by sending you to your reward early. Am I right?” He attempted to answer but couldn't with my broomstick knife in his Adam's apple. All he did was bleed and gurgle. I wrapped a towel around his neck to absorb his blood while I undressed him and then put on his cassock. A perfect fit. I put him in my bed facing the wall, covered him with a blanket and called for the guard. He took me to the warden's office who stared at me for a minute. I worried he recognized me, but he said, “Time is near, Padre.” I wasn't sure how I'd get out the gate until I got an idea. “Will you walk with me while I retrieve what I need for the last rites from my car?” Together we walked through the gate to the priest's car. My demon was dancing with joy. Soon heroin would have me floating as high as could be. “Warden, I want you to know my demon made me do this.” I stuck my wooden knife into his throat and took his money and his car to go get some dope. You understand that it wasn’t my fault, don’t you? The end For more stories, poems, & other stuff. http://joedibuduo.com/ http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=joe+DiBuduo PLEASE SUBSCRIBE FOR$1. A MONTH TO ENABLE ME TO CONTINUE WRITING A STORY A DAY. IF I CONTINUE FOR A YEAR, I WILL WRITE 365 STORIES. You'll receive them all for $1. A month.