Harshest Game

Copyright ©1986 John Wm Beckner - All Rights Reserved

We always hurt the ones we love,
There is only one Hell, no Heaven above.
Live or die, it’s all the same,
In this path of life, the harshest game.

I’d played the game of lies,
Where anything flies.
I was always believing,
Even when she was leaving.

Trust, I thought, was not a game,
She played it well, and earned her fame.
I was too stupid to see,
She said her spirit was free.

She gave oral sex to many a man,
The life of lies then began.
But sex, she said, she never had,
I didn’t know the depths of her bad.

I believed from the start, marriage was trust,
My friends said she was leading a life of lust.
They said I needed to see through the web of lies,
Our life had many lows and many highs.

“She’s playing you for a fool,” my best friend said,
“I know for a fact her legs are always spread.”
As my fist hit his face with my hardest punch,
He hit me back, and I heard a crunch.

“She would never!” I yelled through the blood,
As I was falling, hitting the ground with a thud.
He replied, “She’s even offered me a lay,”
“If I’d keep the secret, and was willing to pay.”

He connected a phone tap when I went out of town,
He later said it was so I would stop being a clown.
I was going out of town, coming back on Saturday,
“Listen to the tap, to have the final say.”

I came back Friday eve but my wife was not home,
As I listened to the recording, I was chilled to the bone.
“I’ve got a box of condoms,” said a voice I didn’t know,
I wanted to kill him, but I didn’t know this foe.

And where on earth was my 6-year-old daughter?
If she wasn’t safe, there would be a slaughter.
All the lies she told were revealed to me,
The stab to my heart brought me down on one knee.

I parked my car down the street,
And waited impatiently to confront the cheat.
She turned on the light as she came through the door,
She was shocked to see me, my wife, the whore.

Before our marriage, only one thing I asked,
And I would never need to know her past.
Faithfulness to each other was a must,
Anything could be overcome except broken trust.

My daughter was safe with the baby sitter,
But this blow to my soul was way too bitter.
She tried to convince me the fault was mine,
“We were just talking, nothing more,” was her line.

Somehow I knew she must be right,
I lost my desire to continue to fight.
With my broken heart there was physical pain,
The broken heart also broke my brain.

Two days later, in the late afternoon,
A trooper stopped to help as I began to swoon.
Having no food or water for the 30 mile walk,
I was much too parched to even talk.

Sun poisoning was the diagnosis I received,
I walked 30 miles, but wasn’t believed.
Voices I heard from an unseen tormentor,
So I was committed after a week to the psych center.

I don’t want to be me, but instead a tree,
Hidden in my foliage, I would be totally free.
The tranquilizer dulls my mind,
How long will I be confined?


The first time I was ever committed to a psych center was after the incident described in the poem.
I know the poem seems unfinished, but I was writing it while an inpatient. So, at that time, there
was nothing else to write.