Is this who we are, then,
choreographed echoes of moments
long since faded,
like the photographs in the stack of
albums hidden in the bottom drawer
of the china cupboard,
where we still remembered how to smile
in the way only a child can.
Before disappointment came and
leached the glittering hues of innocence
from the years wrought with failing
and flying, and the terrible sepia
that stole in with the loss of childhood.
A chorus of repetition greets the day,
where mimicry is mistaken for flattery
and empty words fall like spent
bullet casings. I string them together
and loop them around my neck,
try to remember how it felt to embrace
a kaleidoscope of living color.
Scattered bites of joy in the face of abject suffering
Prying kindness off forked tongues
(Must I wrest my happy from the jaws of monsters?)
Satiating bloodlust of the drunken masses
(If I relish this small joy I found, will it land like salt on your unhealed wounds?)
Don’t look to me to ease your sorrow
If I cannot save the burning city, then I shall glory, unapologetically, in its dazzling demise
I think one of the hardest things is to climb inside of your own pain and be okay. To accept it finally so that it no longer has so much power over you. It almost feels like climbing into bed with the enemy. You want to remain mad at society, at your culture, at your parents, your pastor, at God. We’d rather lash out and seek vengeance on what hurt us. But the only way to be free is to climb inside your own pain and forgive them all.
I sharpen my teeth on all the words I keep from you,
rolling them to and fro in my mouth,
tasting every nuance,
so that even if they do escape
they are smooth as glossy pearls.
I cut my tongue when they gallop up my throat
demanding to be released
and I’ve no choice but to choke them back,
slicing my throat to ribbons on their descent, on every jagged crest and
But even in their wake,
I still bleed silver.
I’m not a good person. When I look at all the brilliant, kind, warm, and caring individuals that I have run across on this platform, I realize how much work I still need to do on myself. I do realize that online and in real life, we tend to display a specific persona that we want people to perceive, and it’s more prevalent online, but I feel that there are some genuinely sweet people on here that go way above what I am willing to do. And it makes me envy them. Not in a bad way, because I know that I can continue to persevere and I can get there too, but it doesn’t come natural to me. I have to work at it. I consistently work on kindness and grace because I need so much of that bestowed on me too.
I was not a nice person growing up. It actually wasn’t until I entered into the darkest years of my life that I learned how to be kind to people. If I hadn’t had my heart absolutely shredded and my beliefs challenged to near extinction, I don’t believe I’d ever have changed the way I was. I enjoyed my lifestyle too much and I loved being elitist. What I mean by that is that I was incredibly picky with who I allowed into my most inner circle, and it meant that I had many acquaintances but only a very very few close friends. On top of that, I was incredibly smug about it too—until the people I adored with all of my heart failed me and I was left with no one. Over the years I was forced to learn how to let people in and not keep myself closed off because my status quo to meeting new people was to not like them. By default, you can’t really get far with that kind of attitude.
As for my blog—my interactions to everyone I have met on this platform have all been genuine, so to whoever is reading this, please don’t mistake my past behavior with my current self. Although I am still under construction, I will admit that I’ve come an incredibly long way from where I was. I read a quote once that said, “It is okay to be a masterpiece and a work-in-progress at the same time” and I don’t think it could be said any better than that.
The dancers take the floor,
only, I am unprepared for this.
The opening strains of the orchestra
They are playing the sound my heart
made when it shattered,
The crashing cymbals, a long low note descending into darkness.
Why am I here? I don’t want to go through this anymore.
The words looked harmless at first, standing there dressed up (or is it down?)
in their elegant despondency. Beckoning
each passer-by with delicate wares made up of images like “palest eyes of Sunday blues” and “languid Friday.” A mere glance was all it took for their siren’s song to be unleashed. Weaving through the air, they danced in slow motion, falling, burrowing through
creases of skin and tears and “have mercy” and wreaked their way through lungs and fingertips and memories tinged in shades of coral. The human heart stood not a chance. Beating out its last, an almost-whisper echoed on the breeze—
Is this exquisite death or
This poem is an ode to Rachel’s poem, Sunday hues. Read it and fall hysterically in love, get your heart mangled in the process, and walk away a better person for it all.
*Photo from ArtStation by Alexey Popov
Forgive me for worshipping
at the altar of your
Forgive me, for I have
against my very self
in carving myself
like a sacrifice, willing
my spilled blood to speak
the words that were
for a mere human
But your lofty ideals were
Uncaring if the tears
that were spilled
led to redemption
And so, I plead with you
to forgive me
for taking too long to
“Please don’t ask me how I’m doing,
I’m feeling fragile
That’s okay, I will mind my own garden
But please remember that I’m
just on the other side
of this broken
And when you’re ready, I will
be there to admire the
flowers growing in
Everyone has heard of the damsel in distress who was saved by a knight in shining armor, but why does no one tell the tale of the knight? Why don’t we know about the demons he had to overcome and the distress and failures he encountered along the way? What treacherous path was he forced upon that gave him no recourse but to become the hero of the story? Perhaps because these are the parts that are unromantic, and so, people are simply not interested in hearing about that part of the story.
Sometimes we wait so hard for someone to sweep into our life and save us that it takes far too long to realize that we are, in fact, responsible for saving our own damn selves. When does one start to realize that they are the knight in the story? That the plight of the princess is so unrealistic that it does little girls everywhere a grave injustice in teaching them to rely on someone to rescue them. That the line between good and bad is sometimes so blurry that you can’t distinguish one from the other. That people are not necessarily against you, they are simply for their own selves, and that indifference can cut deeper than a well-placed sword.
When does one start to understand who the true unsung hero of the story is?
Somewhere along the way, someone messed up a few details in recounting it altogether. The knight’s armor was not shining when he came to rescue the princess, it was dented and torn and covered in the dust of the journey he had to undertake.
Because a knight in shining armor is one who has never known the gruesome rigors of battle in the first place.