Run Away | Dennis Cockerham

My First Plug

Run Away

I was drunk

It felt good

Two girls from school

Who I held a secret crush for
Came over to see me
Angie and Nikki
And they were giving me all kinds of attention!

Of course the liquor that I had snatched
Completely finished
Out of my new
Emergency foster
Parents’ assortment
Had me currently twirling around and around
In front of them
On a Sit and Spin toy
I assumed belonged to some other child

It was West Point, Nebraska
I was born here

Main Street is a red-bricked road
We lived across the tracks
Known as the 3rd Ward
I never did find the first two

A swing set and a garden
Supper served promptly at 4:30 p.m.
Playing outside until the street lights came on
5 dollar allowance and
The skating rink
Every Saturday afternoon

Tonka trucks
Hot wheels
Church every Sunday
Christmas was everybody

Public High School
And that one Ford Galaxy with
The spray paint

I was raised by my grandparents
Having already raised one family
They did the best that they could do
With what they had been taught

Problem was
They hadn’t been taught very well

My grandmother had a habit of picking favorites
I was not the favorite

Right or wrong did not matter
Either way, I was wrong

Wrong equaled spankings swatters
And open-handed beatings

I would call this abuse
But it was nothing
Compared to the straight beat down
I would get from my grandfather
When she had him coming at me in a blind rage

During my 5th grade year
One of my aunts came
To stay at the house for a while

She happened to witness first hand
The life which had now become my normal

Setting out to save me from this
She contacted social services
Police and others

They put together a plan for me to run away

Here I was

And although Angie and Nikki were amused by it
I don’t think that my new family
Would appreciate these facts as much

The fact that I was
Not only over-sized for the toy that I was on
I was drunk
I was entertaining two girls in their home
That I was doing all of this
With both my pants and my underwear down to my ankles!

Yes sir
I was 10 years old
I was drunk
I was naked
And I had two girls in the room with me
I had never felt this before
Such a better feeling than all those that I was used to

However, this emotional deduction had occurred
This intoxicated process of awareness

The conclusion was made
And my path was now set



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[…] Run Away | Dennis Cockerham […]


[…] My recovery is less about running to drugs, and more about not running from my feelings. It has been a long, painful battle that I have been fighting since I was 10 years old. I am now 48, in prison, yet finally free. […]


[…] I ran away at the age of 10. I was pretty much living on the street by 11. I called my mother or my sister only when I needed something from them or I wanted them to bail me out of another mess. Each time they would come, overwhelmed by the idea of being able to help me and the sense of relief from just hearing my voice. After a short rest, I would leave again. […]