Mental Health: Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle – By Patrick Bailey (Guest Post) #mentalhealth #addiction #alcoholism


Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle


Credit: Nicolas Pereyra via Unsplash


The Solution in a Bottle

A bottle can be the answer to a lot of problems. The issue for alcoholics, however, is whether or not their solution to life’s problems comes from good counsel. Among countless questions, they can ask themselves is if their next series of drinks makes them feel better now or long term?

Feeling better right now is a normal desire, especially when a person hurts; it’s instinctive. Physical pain, for example, signals our brain to ‘take our hand out of the fire!’ It is a form of deep desire where we react involuntarily, and don’t pause to consider our reaction. We simply do.


Sacrificing Well-Being and Health

Nevertheless, too much alcohol consumption can override our instinctive sense of self-protection.  If a person drinks compulsively, they can harm each realm of their well-being and health — emotional, mental, physical, social, and spiritual (etc.). One’s entire humanity can be damaged with enough bottles of liquor. Often, a person’s quest for ‘answers’ is the core reason alcoholics seek the bottom of a bottle. Sought after solutions become pressing issues — not just for answers, but wise ones.

It’s interesting that people soon don’t recognize what came first when they began chasing answers through overconsumption of alcohol. It’s the proverbial issue of the chicken or the egg, and drinking becomes a sequential cycle. Their need for a ‘remedy’ leads to alcoholism, and alcoholism leads to a need for remedy. Eventually, heavy drinkers spin in circles, and the exit ramps speeding down a deadly highway, disappear in a blur.


Credit: Sanjeevan SatheesKumar via Unsplash


Seeking Answers and Confronting Trauma

Moreover, it’s not only that the pursuit of a remedy that is hard-wired into people’s brains, but wanting a thoughtful answer too. People want to improve their minds, seek meaning, and to have assurance for their decisions. The ability to perceive information, analyze it, and problem-solve is key. But some people have their exquisite mental abilities hijacked and compromised due to alcohol addiction. Bottom line, people can’t access their best decision-making skills nor find a peaceful mental place in a bottle of booze.

Some people also come to ‘a bottom of a bottle solution’ compromised due to trauma in life. Trauma, particularly longstanding trauma that occurred when adults were young, effects how they learned to cope in the world. Many people who chase their solutions through heavy drinking have had traumatic childhoods. They arrive at a bottle having problem-solving abilities, which are stunted. It is vital to discover solutions for people’s mental and emotional difficulties—from managing bad feelings to making healthy behavioral choice. Nonetheless, this can result in a lifelong and desperate struggle for those who wrestle chronically in their heads and hearts with alcoholism.


Seeking Hope and Support Through Alcohol

Consulting oracles is a longstanding practice in human history, and by no means has disappeared. Everyone searches for hope when they’re afraid, confused, in pain, and worried. People seek answers that will relieve them of difficult feelings and will calm their agitated minds. They want their unknown questions to be answered, and a way to move forward despite life’s difficulties. Most alcoholics desire something or anything, to find serenity and relaxation in their days.

Sadly, alcohol is not often a reliable resource for short-term stress. Why else would we continue to ‘consult’ it? If a way of coping works for people initially, they will continue to turn to it; they will reach for it to work again and again. Every compulsive drinker once was supported by alcohol in a better way, no matter how short-lived that support lasted.

At one point, alcohol was a solid, accessible, and steady support system. It worked, improving life for a time — even for an evening. But often, alcohol is never a reliable support-system for people; still, they cling to it despite knowing better. Sometimes copious drinking is only helpful for a gulp before it’s magic fades, but alcoholics appreciate that brief moment if life feels terrible enough.


Credit: Ben Hershey via Unsplash


Finding Sobriety and Support Outside the Bottle

Former alcoholics, such as myself, can be loyal to liquor to a fault. I can hang on to it until I’m shaken loose, clinging, kicking, and screaming. Until I finally, chose a road to sobriety, which also provided me with satisfying answers and wisdom (from a variety of sources) about life’s larger questions. I let go of alcohol, my ‘trusted friend,’ who had betrayed me too many times to count. Prior to rehab, my release from alcoholism was a bone-shattering experience. It’s not a mandatory way to become sober, but that’s how I did it. I was frightened to see how huge the iceberg underneath me was. I wanted to stay on the tip, happy in my denial of what lay beneath the waves.

One of the aspects about AA I liked was that members were encouraged to visualize alcoholism as more than drinking — as an iceberg, where the bulk of their problems were hidden underwater. I found this difficulty in my over-drinking. No matter how much I drank; in the end, there was still horrendous pain I couldn’t drown with any amount of liquor. Drinking was my problem, but it was not my key problem. At the root of my alcoholism was my life and how I lived it. No matter how worrisome my emotional state or my behavior while drinking, alcohol seemed as if it were always a suitable solution for my personal issues. Even in my desperate days, when alcohol failed me more often than not, I still clung to it.


Solutions Beneath Alcohol Addiction

Moreover, peering beneath my drinking solution, peeling back the layers through detox and early recovery, I discovered I was a scared and vulnerable person. I was ill-equipped to handle everyday life, haunted by trauma, and filled with deep shame. In addition, I was angry and sad. My regular excursions to the bottom of a bottle had induced tremendous stress, but I came to the solution of ‘the bottle’ already weighted with pain. The first time I became drunk was the first time I can remember feeling at ease; I was a young adult, and my over drinking continued from there.

Nonetheless, I’ve learned the true solutions to life and life’s questions don’t live in the bottom of a bottle. My story is one of countless stories, all told from someone who felt worse than most other people imagine they would, as an intoxicated person. However, there is hope and recovery is a real possibility. No problem hiding beneath anyone’s stream of alcohol is too difficult to confront and solve. With the right help, recovery is a real possibility.


Credit: Syndey Ray via Unsplash.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

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Notable Quotes: October 2018 Part One #notablequotes #quotes #pinterest #poetry


Welcome to officially Autumn/Fall, maybe Winter or Spring? Here, in Alberta, we never know. Yesterday was November blizzardy, today is a warm fall day from say, in late-September. And next week, we are up in the double-digits (Celsius), which is more early September weather, not late-October.

So, in this weather battle we either freeze as yesterday, or are boiling hot. There’s no in-between and the thermostat’s confused. But, I’m told its an El Nino year so we should have a warm winter for the rest of season (burst out laughing).

nature red forest leaves
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Otherwise, I’m still doing a bit of freelance writing and proofreading. I’m looking to eventually have time to work on a final draft of my novel to submit it. I went to a writers conference for in August and had a successful pitch, and I would love to submit it to that agent/publisher. But currently, writing/editing time for my novel is a dream as I spend much time starting up my Steeped Tea business and getting into a routine. Also, I am looking for a great apartment in a certain of the city near to my friends and family.

Blue Tea Cup
Credit: Google

I never thought after my health problems that this could be a possibility. I need something small right now, and I’m hoping to pick up more freelance work that pays decent, even if its administration, and to support myself as securely as possible until I can work more hours, and buy a place with money from my disability settlement, last year. I’m shocked to be at this place in my life, to have some kind of independence. I know it will be harder than home and more expensive for sure, but I’m still excited. Almost, as if I’m 23-years old again.

So, that’s life lately, and I hope you guys enjoy my October quotes. The first set is a bit late in coming.


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Mental Toughness Quote
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Obstacles Quote
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©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Photo Challenge/Saturday Mix: Poem – Wrapped Refrain (2) – “The Fighter” #amwritingpoetry #photochallenge #SaturdayMix


Thanks to Nekneeraj of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s photo challenge. Also, thanks to Sarah of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting Saturday Mix opposing forces. This week’s opposing pairs are: whisper and shout, and humid and dry.


Credit: CityVarcity


“And Though She Be But Little, She Was Fierce” – William Shakespeare, A MidSummers Night Dream (Act 3: Scene 2).


The Champion” by Carrie Underwood Ft. Ludacris


I’m no faceless void, I’ve been granted reprieve to barriers break,

Discovering my mind, my body healing slow now awakes.

I’m trying to live in short moments,

Dreams won’t fade, no shouts or groans;

No weeping or fearing fierce blows.

Nor shivering in a cold few know,

A champion, I can fight my foes,

They but perceive whispers of woes;

Woes experienced by those who know not how a mind shatters;

Of lost clarity, aching sickness that still batters.

*****

It’s a shock when you notice healing; when your hurts lessen,

When you’re not forever jaded, aching or questioning.

You forgot life’s joyful details.

Skills, hopes, your ability maimed;

Daily routines to avoid what hurts,

Became your normal to subvert —

But now, your reborn hopes anew;

Seeing the lost isn’t askew.

Whirling in hope’s return, less chocking humid shame and pain,

Released from your cocoon, joy-de-vivre once more regained.

*****

All you who are broken, whether trapped or quivering afraid,

Gaze to the Heavens, your family, your friends, unashamed.

They’re your rocks, they carried you;

Don’t forget them, their aiding through.

Remember it’s okay to need —

People’s help, when your hurt, demeaned.

To need is to serve when unseen,

Brittle and dry or slow healing.

You’ve a purpose; nothing’s impossible, suffering’s a strength,

Keep pushing, keep living, keep yearning, keep praying; hope waits.

*****

Life’s never stagnant, we’ve all ‘ups’ and ‘downs;’ no one’s quite safe,

From changes, illness, or heartbreak; but keep achieving great.

Accomplishments can be little or —

Leaping giant steps towards doors;

Those that open — those we must pry,

That we knock, break down as we cry.

Be thankful for what you have, but strive —

To live your life joyous and alive.

Keep knocking down doors, but help others survive their drought too;

You’re no faceless void — I think you’re fierce; vibrant fighter through.

*****


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

Saturday Mix/ Photo Challenge: Fiction – Dear Moose #amwriting #fiction #SaturdayMix #PhotoChallenge


Thanks to Sarah of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie’s Double Take. Also, combining with NEKNEERAJ of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie’s Photo Challenge. Sarah’s homophone sets this week are: mail – postal delivery and male – masculine person. Also, moose – a large elk and mousse – dessert of whipped cream and eggs.


Credit: Brooke Shaden


It began with a letter. The clunk of the mailman’s shoes as he delivered a letter sealed with scarlet. Genevieve snatched the letter from her mailbox. Her hands trembled. The writing of the address seemed masculine. It curved without order or neatness. The fact that a male could handwrite these days surprised her.

“Perhaps he’s an older man?” She shrugged and slit the letter. The name on the envelope wasn’t one Genevieve recognized. She did not believe its sender was ‘actually’ ‘John Smith.’ She rolled her eyes.

Genevieve slid three folded cream pages from the envelope and straightened them. The first page had a tiny emblem in the corner. She wasn’t sure what it meant. A ‘J’ with a squiggle looped over and down from the top of the ‘J’ to form a tiny ‘S’ beneath it. The third letter was a ‘T’ that she realized matched the wax seal.

‘John Smith’s’ writing began without greetings. Genevieve read a few sentences and discovered the letter was penned to someone called Moose.

“I’m not Moose, and I don’t know anyone with that nickname.” She struggled to read ‘John’s’ handwriting. After a bit, she set down the first page. Moose was involved in serious business.

She threw her coat and purse on the floor. She’d only returned from work a minute before the envelope arrived. She groaned. “Why C/O Genevieve O’Connor?” But no one answered, as she knew they wouldn’t.

Genevieve pinched the bridge of her nose. “Shower and food. Then, I’ll read more.” She gathered clean clothes and pondered the letter under the shower’s spray. After a half hour, she dressed and heated left-over Ravioli.

She grabbed a cozy blanket from a linen closet and flipped over page one of the letter Genevieve swore under her breath. Damn illegible handwriting. Can’t you print like a normal person?

She padded back to her room to towel dry her hair and to comb through some mousse. Then, she reclined on her sofa, gathering her blanket as she deciphered ‘John’s’ letter. She shivered despite her hot shower, and couldn’t help the feeling that something about this letter was amiss.

*****

That’s how it Genevieve became lost in the forest, and ended up at a summer cottage closed for the fall. Her body trembled and she couldn’t stand the dirt, blood, and other forest offerings on her skin. The only place to wash was a large kitchen sink. There was no shower, so Genevieve stuffed the cabin’s broken window pane with a blanket and stripped.

She couldn’t get rid of the tang of blood or acrid dirt. It made her nauseous. She scrubbed her skin raw, and poured more dish soap on her hair. She stepped out of the sink careful not to slip. As she rinsed her hair, evidence of the past few days whirled down the drain.

She was tired of being alone. She yelled at the absent John Smith. He’d helped her only once before. “You’ve a lot of explaining, John.”His name was a sneer. “I’m tired of this game. I never knew Moose. I don’t know why I’m his contact: let me be, and tell your gun-totting buddies too.”

Her voice echoed in the cottage, and she was alone except for the howling mountain’s winds; its paradoxical breezes made her headache throb. Gentle winds mixed with gusts causing the windows to clammer.

Genevieve scrambled through kitchen drawers until she found the Advil. Swallowing two pills, she fell into bed. The sheets were lavender-scented and the duvet warm. Who lived here? She didn’t know. Then, a hand swept across her forehead, and she mumbled thinking it was a dream.

“John?” Her voice was hoarse, and her hands reached, and gripped a muscled arm in flannel. Genevieve groaned as his fingers combed through her wet hair. His hand rested on her forehead.

“It is you.” The room was dark and only John’s outline was visible. She knew it was him by his scent. Fresh and masculine.

“You’ve a fever.” She rolled her eyes. Genevieve was mad.

“Drink this?” A red mug lowered to her mouth.

“What is it?”

“I’m not here to hurt you, Genevieve.”

“Such a liar.” He insisted she drink it, so she did. In-between sips she grumbled and tried to sit up. He pushed her down.

“It’s Neocitran. You’re sick and you need sleep.”

“I’m sick? Whose fault is that? After everything, now you show up?” Genevieve’s eyes closed as lethargy overcame her.

“Go away, John. I’ll figure this out alone. You complicate everything.”

He sighed. She opened her eyes as he rubbed his hands over watched his face, and through his two-day stubble.

“I didn’t mean to handle it this way. I didn’t know you’d never met your brother.” He combed through her hair once more.

It bothered Genevieve that things seemed less hopeless with John beside her. She wanted him to stay but knew he’d be gone by morning.

“Just leave, John.”

“Not a chance, Genna.” She thought she imagined his last words.


©Mandibelle16.(2018) All Rights Reserved.

Notable Quotes November 2017 Part Two #Quotes #Pinterest


Happy December! I feel I haven’t been around so much blogging but I made sure to prepare the last part of quotes for November 2017. I think I’m behind so I’ll have more quotes this week to catch up. But please enjoy these quotes for now to ponder. Have fun with your holiday celebrations throughout the month, as well.

I’m nearly done my Christmas shopping, a few odds and ends to go. How about you? Life is good. Trying to figure my direction out at the moment but excited for what’s coming this Christmas and in 2018. For now I’ll start with Christmas baking and in-between freelance writing will try to finish November Notes along with doing a few more short fiction prompts.

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Cheers 😊🍷👌 🎄

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©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

#NovemberNotes Day 9/Saturday Mix: Poem – Shadorma – “Be a Riser” #amwriting #poetry #hope #saturdaymix


For November Notes the Day 9 song is called ” 1-800 – 273 – 8255″ Logic featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid. I reversed the songs for Day 8 and Day 9 so Day 9’s actual song was completed yesterday. As per usual combining prompts with Sarah from MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Saturday Mix Prompt of a shadorma form poem about emotion.

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Credit: Ricardo Gomez Angel via Unsplash

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“1-800 – 273 – 8255” by Logic featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid

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“The Shadorma is a Spanish poetic form made up of a stanza of six lines

(sestet)  with no set rhyme scheme.

It is a syllabic poem with a meter of 3/5/3/3/7/5.

It can have many stanzas, as long as each follows the meter” (Popular Poetry Forms).

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You’re on the —

Low of life that’s fine,

Just take time,

Realize —

No one can see the future,

Sit down, stay awhile.

—-

Take your time,

Value the time you have,

So your low,

Many more —

Are deeper in dirt than you,

So, rise another day.

——

If you’re here,

You matter a lot,

Building life —

Takes much time,

Nothing is perfect, it hurts,

Rise to the challenge.

—-

You don’t want —

To be alive but —

You don’t know,

What it is

Truly breathing free, inhaling —

Life is tough, rise up.

——

Find your help —

Seek out others to —

Stop the thoughts;

Those anxious,

Murmurs insecure and bleak,

Rise you are not weak.

—–

Emotion’s bleed,

Guy or girl life hurts.

Healing is —

A process.

Don’t quit, don’t give in; fight on —

Sun always rises.

——

Your life is —

Precious but, —

You hear what you feel;

Alone with —

No hope or —

Reason to survive, find faith —

God cares, she cares, rise.

—–

You matter,

You’ll see put down your —

Weapon, don’t inflict —

Dying wounds.

Breath, seek help,

There are phones beyond no home,

Let her in and rise.

——

She wants you —

To feel the light’s glare,

Sunshine with,

Delightful —

Rays of hope; fight on, don’t end —

Your life, rise up, swim.

—–

You don’t want —

To try anymore,

But there’s her,

Heart beating —

Next to yours, so hope, believe,

Rise for tomorrow’s.

—–

Tomorrow,

Never dies, the —

Words are true.

Life is yours,

Your legs tremble so walk on,

Rise, you’re valuable.

—–

Innately you;

Irreplaceable.

If you left,

Her heart would —

Shatter; others too would wonder,

Why such promise fell.

—-

Let them in,

They can’t see inside,

Thoughts rolling,

So fast, get —

Their attention, ask ’til —

Taking their hands you rise.

—-

You want life,

You choose it crying,

Not easy —

To admit,

You want to be alive, not dead,

Rise up, live well.

—–

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.

Flash Fiction for the Aspiring Writer: Poem – Laurenelle – “Conviction to Save Angels” #amwriting #flashfiction #poetry 


Thanks to Priceless Joy for hosting FFftAW.

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Credit: Elaine Farrington Johnson

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Lady Gaga – “Angel Down” 

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Angel down, oh, angel, people stood around 

Wishing we could just be loving, grateful. 

Courage disappears bullets they surround. 

I believe we can be much less hateful,   

Learn wisdom, use our hearts and realize; 

Shots were fired, move provide help, safety.

But life’s a trial, some of us don’t recognize, 

We’re blessed, stop being fools who are acting weak, 

Aid the angels falling, be cognizant

Don’t you know we’re all facing the bleakness?

Our only shelter, in arms of God sacred, 

Shots were fired, down the street where we’d once meet. 

Where are our leaders, elected but graceless? 

People gawk and stand around being useless, 

Terror overcoming until we’re faceless. 

Save an angel despite being clueless, 

Wishing we could just be loving, grateful, 

I wish we’d all do something, not be ruthless

I confess I’m lost, I’ll still try to connect, 

I’ll care for humanity as I’ve respect. 

Angel down, oh, angel, people stood around. 

Courage disappears, bullets they surround. 

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©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 


Sunday Photo Fiction: Poetry – Rictameter – “Streets A New” #amwritimg #poetry #flashfiction 


Thanks to Alastair Forbes for hosting SPF.

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Credit: J. Hardy Carroll
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Empty, 

Thoughts with empty —

Dreams; never meant to inflict,

Such pain, no anxiety, hurt —

done unintentionally

Not considering, 

Empty. 

——-

Bare streets, 

Abandonment, 

No one comes here, danger —

Lurks in sun’s zenith and night’s chill.

Lost lonely souls wander, 

Hopeless; shifty —

Bare streets. 

——-

Broken, 

Boulevard with —

Dreams in smithereens; pieces —

Of what could’ve been, deserted. 

Littered streets, none tread 

Improvements left, 

Broken.

——

Why fix? 

Somewhere no one —

Ventures? Bring beauty to  —

Dank tenements abandoned? 

Some people still live here, 

Shuffling through, 

Why Fix? 

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Broken, 

I can’t hull stones, 

Nor restore past glories, 

I’m no architect with dreams of —

Organic design where the 

Forgotten dwell, blurry —

Eyed and hopeless, 

Broken. 

——

Hope means, 

Skilled developer, 

Notes potential in ruins, 

Will see masked brilliance beneath the —

Treachery; Boulevard —
Where someone sees, 

Hope is. 

——-

Anew, 

I can’t remould, 

Your splintered heart, pristine, 

I can stitch the pieces together, 

So in time, stitches fade,  

Heart heals almost, 

Anew, 

———

©Mamdibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Saturday Mix: Poem – Cascading Etherees – “Silhouettes and Blessings” #poetry #dVerse #amwriting #SaturdayMix 


Thanks to Paul Scribbles from the Poet’s Pub for hosting a #dVerse prompt reply on blessings. I’m combining this #dVerse prompt missed with last week’s Saturday Mix Prompt from Teresa of MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie‘s Prompt on doing a silhouette poem

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Credit: Eden Hills

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They’re not completely obvious, often —

Difficult to find, shadowed in, 

Darkness, silhouettes hidden by, 

Electrifying light so, 

Tangerine-orange that —

All behind it is, 

Hidden, pitch black, 

They are masked, 

Easy to, 

Miss. 

—–

But, 

I know, 

You have them, 

Thankfulness for —

Blessings in disguise. 

Shadowed, hidden behind, 

Glaring light, such blaring noise, 

Searching carefully, you’ll find them, 

You’ll see all along what’s been taken, 

For granted, unrecognized blessings. 

—–

Sometimes they feel like curses, too much work, 

Then, seeing others suffer you think, 

Realize life’s not at all bad.

You’ve all your basic needs met, 

You’ve extra money for, 

Luxury and treats, 

You’re well cared for, 

God’s blessed you, 

So share, 

Give

—–

Be, 

Not mean, 

Or spiteful, 

To those who beg, 

They need a little —

Help; some food, money to —

Make it through the day and —

Eat; find a place to sleep and to, 

Clean up; they only want to be like us, 

Have their needs met, with the odd treat too.

——

If only we all counted are blessings, 

When we were richly cared for, when He, 

Made sure we made a living. 

Had money to survive. 

To buy little extras.  

To be comfortable, 

Provided for.  

We rest, they —

Shiver, 

Cold.

——-

They’re 

Hurting. 

But it’s more, 

Than the unloved —

Silhouettes. 

Never seen, covered by —

The light in the background scene, 

Never visible, dark, unseen, 

We miss seeing them these figures who’ll, 

Disappear in dark, when sun falls and sets.

———

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved.