The Heroin Diaries

SKU: 978-0-9770463-7-9 $24.95

Open this book if you dare, a poet’s lens into a world of the drowning, poems of the moment written with courage by a doctor. They express a dedicated healer’s compassion and the limitations of caring and medicine.

The details, descriptions, names, and settings have been altered to protect patient confidentiality. In the few poems where the patient’s identity may still be clear to their acquaintances, I have received permission from the patient to print the poem. In some cases the patients have preferred that I use their names. Some explanation of terms used and notes on addiction can be found at the end of the text.

Please note the placement of the photos in the book is random. None of the poems in the book are written about any of the individuals in the photos. In no instance does the poem preceding or following the photo have any connection to that person.

About the cover image: Sherri Ferrier, 44, homeless and battling a heroin addiction, meets with Dr Mary Dowd at Catholic Charities in Portland, ME, in 2015. (Photo by Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post via Getty Images).

Mary Dowd, MD, is a physician specializing in addiction in the homeless population in Portland, ME. She works in detox, at various addiction clinics, and sometimes does a stint at the county jail. She is married and has four grown children. Her poems have appeared in various journals and in the Hippocrates Prize Anthology 2017. She has led poetry workshops for the Transformational Language Arts Network at Goddard College in Plainfield, VT, and The Examined Life Conference in Iowa City, IA. For many years she led a workshop reading and writing poetry with men in long-term treatment for addiction at Milestone Foundation.
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