self-portrait


Self-Portrait
David Whyte

It doesn’t interest me if there is one God
Or many gods.
I want to know if you belong or feel
Abandoned.

If you know despair or can feel it in others.
I want to know
If you are prepared to live in the world
With its harsh need
To change you. If you can look back
With firm eyes
Saying this is where I stand. I want to know
If you know
How to melt into that fierce heat of living
Falling toward
The center of your longing. I want to know
If you are willing
To live, day by day, with the consequence of love
And the bitter
Unwanted passion of your sure defeat.

I have heard, in that fierce embrace, even
The gods speak of God.

I came across this poem by David Whyte this morning. The poem speaks of a steadfastness within. Something we hold on to when everything around us is uncertain and chaotic.

We are defeated, Whyte says, by love and also by fate. We will be slowly or quickly broken on the wheel of time, by life and by the living of it.

So the question is: when everything falls apart, when love goes wrong, when hopes are dashed, when dreams are broken; where do you go and what do you hold on to?

David Whyte

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a reminder by rain


This wonderful poem created by a fellow blogger is lovely for its hearfelt feelings, yearning and longing. All the wonderful things that come with Love.

It was raining last night,
calm, gentle rain,
that tapped against my window pane,
& called me back from unsettled sleep,
to soothe a heart too numb to weep.

I pushed my window open wide,
to let the soothing rain rush inside.
It caressed my cheeks, lips, eyes & hair,
And for a moment I thought,
My beloved you were there.

I was in fact thinking of you today,
and these days, I actually do that a lot it seems.
You’re always in my heart by day,
at night you drift into my dreams.

I want to feel you in my arms,
Even though you’re so miles away.
I hope you still remember me deep in your heart,
Even if we speed on different paths today.

I want to be the music that you listen to,
I’ll be there in every song.
I’ll laugh with you and sing with you,
and comfort you when your days go wrong

I’ll be the moon as it dances
on the water cold and still,
For I have loved you always,
and I know I always will.

Though you may not see me in physical form,
as you opted to live your life today,
Just close your eyes and think of me,
I will not be too far away.

A Reminder by Rain.

salt


salt7I recently stumbled upon salt.  Not the kind you flavour your food with, but “salt”, in terms of poetry.

The artist who writes these beautifully raw and soul-stirring poems is known as Nayyirah Waheed.

If you haven’t already, I strongly urge you to look her up and her writings. They are indeed one of a kind and truly beautiful.  She writes from such an honest place and is unapologetic about what she says and I admire that greatly.  When I first read her work, something in me slowed down, in fact my world slowed down; and if it is possible for the heart’s beat to pause between beats, then mine certainly did.

I think when a piece of writing stays with you; sort of attaches itself on your psyche, your soul or your heart as such; you know it’s a good piece of work!

You can’t seem to shake it off for you were not meant to. And Nayyirah’s poems do just this.

When you look at her book you’ll notice the empty spaces and the sparse sentences.  Most of her poems are short but I think that this is intentional.  The empty spaces, like the spaces in our own lives, are there for a reason.  It is there to help us pause, to reflect.  It allows the reader the time to process what has just transpired and what continues to transpire within.  The words need this space.  And you the reader will need it too once you’ve read it.

Here are a few snippets of what Nayyirah beautifully offers.  I’ve selected the ones that closely relate to love, both of self and of the other.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.

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salt. is a journey through warmth and sharpness. this collection of poetry explores the realities of multiple identities, language, diasporic life & pain, the self, community, healing, celebration, and love. 

http://www.nayyirahwaheed.com/