audio poem Poetry

Narrative Poetry: The Worse Case Scenario, by Mark Tulin- LetterPile

A narrative poem about a family therapist’s last case.
— Read on The Worst Case Scenario.

Here’s the revised version of the poem:

To Hell with God and Country
By Mark Tulin

The family that made me quit therapy
had sister who never came home,
a mother who neglected her young,
an alcoholic father who gambled,
and a delinquent son named John.

Their row home faced a cement square,
around the corner was a convenience store,
a crying baby crawling on a dirty carpet
in need of a diaper change,
and a son who choked his father.

The police were called,
concerned neighbors outside on stoops,
the son was arrested,
and Mom booked a flight to Ohio
to meet an internet lover named Charles.

A family too far gone to salvage.
A strew of DSM diagnoses,
siblings playing war games,
a home in quarantine,
relationships on methamphetamine.

I tried to help, 
but there was no love lost
between a pack of wolves,
a crying shame, no change,
a family went their separate ways,
a group of lives in a chaotic disarray.

To hell with God and Country.
I changed my career path,
taking down my advanced degrees,
my desire to salvage the unsalvageable
had put my sanity in jeopardy.

I am an author, poet, humorist, and short story writer from Palm Springs, California. I write about various topics, from my early childhood in Philadelphia to my years as a family therapist and finally to my soul-searching in California. These are poetic narratives that may have humorous or serious content or both. Either way, I hope my poetry and stories resonate with you.

9 comments on “Narrative Poetry: The Worse Case Scenario, by Mark Tulin- LetterPile

  1. That must have been a very tough decision to come to.

    • I had been a therapist for years. I felt as though my voice was suppressed. At the time, however, I had a passion for it and therapy gave me meaning. 🙂

      • A counselor I worked with would some days express the feeling that she had all these people and their problems hanging onto her, and she needed to pluck them off.

      • That’s a good way of putting it. But my office was so busy that I was always covered. 🌲

  2. Very well done! I had to take a few moments to listen to your calming voice. What a great break you just gave me! Thank you for painting life with your words.

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