A journey to the far side of tragedy

I was hurt,
once upon a time,
and in the years that followed
I dug a hole for myself,
and hid from the world.

But all the lies I told myself
could not make a hovel
into a home,
and all of my hiding
only helped me rot.

Only the wind could blow away
the cobwebs in my head.

Only the rain could wash me clean
of years of accumulated filth.

Only the sun could reignite
the passion in my heart.

And the earth that kept me safe
could stand for me still –
not as walls to hide behind,
but as a firmament beneath my feet,
supporting me on my journey.

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Pariah path

It’s easy to be part of the party,
to match the mood, the tempo, the time,
and let the world swallow you up.

But I am a solitary soul,
and I feel like I don’t fit in,
for though I am kith,
I’m no one’s kin.

The crowd’s no consolation to me,
because a love that demands everything
deserves nothing.

I am my moods,
my tempo and temperament,
perfect in their imperfection,
even when they cannot keep time.

So I take another step
down my pariah path,
unsure where I’m going,
unsure when I’ll get there,
and willing to walk alone
if I must.

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Time shares

If I ever play the market,
I think I’ll buy time shares,
because everyone I encounter
would love to stay and chat –
if they only had the time.

And if I could monetize that –
all the hours and minutes,
the days and months –
and charge people a premium,
it would be like owning a mint.

Who can find the time?
I hear it all the time.
And maybe I’d be kind to them,
in my financial ambitions,
but I doubt it.

Why would I spare a second
once I’m finally on the top
on any of the people
who had no time for me
when I was on the bottom?

I’ll charge them every cent
that I know my goods are worth
for I learned the value
of kindness, and company,
and spare time, in absentia.

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Prominence

Empty arms that yearn to be held,
dry lips desperate for a kiss,
meals to be shared,
conversations to be voiced,
sheets to be fought over…

How this single life,
tedious at times,
burns like a hard drink.

And if I treat it like shots,
it is too many,
too much, too soon,
and I regret my actions
come the morning.

But if I nurse it through the night,
like a fine Scotch or Cognac…
Then? Oh my, then…

What exquisite pain.
What a magnificent flame.

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Meine Lieblings-Narben

My Favorite Scars are not
from those who loved me dearest,
nor those who held me closest,
but from the ones who taught me the most.

The ones I left…
The ones who left me…
The ones who built me up
before burning down my world.

Because every scar I carry –
every blemish, bruise, and burn –
is married to a memory,
and linked to a lesson.

You helped me grow,
inspired me,
and called me out
on my bullshit.

Meine Lieblings-Narben,
I hold you close to my heart,
and treasure all that we have shared –
the good times, and the bad.

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Notice (a response to 152 by Shane Koyczan)

1 in 5 tells a story, and it doesn’t seem like much until you start scaling it up:
20 out of a hundred…
200 out of a thousand…
1.46 Billion out of the 7.3 Billion people living today…

They’re a minority, it’s true.
4 out of every 5 don’t doubt or despair,
don’t travel to the darkest of places,
where they don’t see a way out.

But some days
people win the lottery –
the one that no one wants to win –
and they get to be 1 in 5.

Some days I’m lucky,
and I get to be 1 in 5 too.
Some days I’m luckier,
and I get to be one of the 4 in 5.

Today I’m not the 1,
but today is the one
when I need to point out the 1
so that 4 out of 5 people

Notice.

Trance

Dreamy shadows,
smoke and whiskey,
the long, waxing burn
of an evening.

The soft sensation
tingling at the tips of your fingers.
The taste of a kiss
that burns past the dawn.

A lingering memory,
rosy past its bloom.
A night you barely remember.
A night you won’t forget.

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