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Saturday, March 5, 2011

made of things and other poems

last night, on the sidewalk,
i jogged by someone sprawled under a storefront awning.
i only glimpsed him for a second,
but he looked like the pure expression of suffering, of hell.

never before had i seen someone seem so crazed, so intensely broken.
everything filthy and mangled about him looked permanent.

at a different time in my life,
perhaps this wouldn't have wrecked me so.
but it did.
that is a human being,
i just kept repeating to myself.
a human being.
a family of which you are a member.

how are you willing
to let one of your own

if i don't bow and salute the life-force in you,
no matter who you are,
i am not sincerely recognizing and honoring it me.

what i am,
what i truly am,
is the rare recipient of energy that could
have gone anywhere but here.

when i see it in you,
i see my closest kin.

if i am brave enough to give myself unconditional love,
it doesn't mean i have defeated my fears.
but it does show who is stronger.

slowly i am coming to understand
the difference between
the inexpressible and the unexpressed.

the former leaves me speechless. amazed.
while the latter tricks me into believing i know the answer,
but without the words to prove it.

as i find little moments throughout my day
to let my mind sit still,
i see what a farce i've made of things.
i don't know the answer.
and i don't have the words.

yet what kinder friend is there
than one that teaches
to keep the question alive.

1 comment:

Jabiz said...

Blogger Jabiz said...

More comments on this poem soon. It is one of my favorites, but for now i just wanted to tell you how much it reminded me of this Ani DiFranco song:

i remember the first time i saw someone lying on the cold street,
i thought, "i can't just walk past here, this can't just be true."
but i learned by example to just keep moving my feet.
it's amazing the things that
we all learn to do.

so we're led by denial like
lambs to the slaughter,
serving empires of style and
carbonated sugar water
and the old farm road's a four-lane that leads to the mall
and our dreams are all guillotines
waiting to fall,