You can cry about uncertainty or practice it daily
When I'm running away its daunting
But slowed down
It yokes me in and provides hope
The complexity may be unending
But it is me
Part two of three of new song "breath. work. break. through."
Thanks to @dizzism for the original artwork. .
The idea that there's a shortcut to happiness is a plague on this Earth. There are people who believe that they could find happiness if they had more money or lived in a better place; if they looked a different way or acted a different way; if they were drunk or high or in love. But true happiness isn't found in serenity or comfort, it is grown in chaos. It is something that, even in the worst of circumstances, is self-realized. The product of a long journey. A tree cannot reach for the heavens until first its seed has been placed into the earth. #arlucas
Love is the first step.
Love is the last.
It is the first bandaid on a playground scrape.
Love is the crack.
Love is the hello.
Love is the goodbye.
Love is the beginning of a sentence.
Love is the promise of a lie.
It is an exhale of angst and a sigh of contentment.
Love is tasting your pain.
Love is knowing.
Love is agonizing.
Love is opening the door, only to close it on forever.
Love is opening another, for a Once upon a dream.
Love is the scream.
Love is the whimper.
Love is the wild growing ever wider.
It is the second you wake from a nightmare believing, that only what is real, is worth seeing.
Love is a nightlight left on,
Or the last piece of pie.
Because you know why.
And the next.
It is the reckoning.
Look at me,
I just want to be heard.
I want you to hear the words I’m too afraid to say.
I want you to look me in the eyes and tell me it’s going to be alright, look me in the eyes and tell me that you see me.
All of me.
There are 3 things that I like about the late Fred Eckman although I never met him...
1. He was one of my father’s oldest and best friends.
2. Responding to some nefarious tale my father told him about me, Eckman wrote, “I gather that Sallie is a real pisser; I’m sure I’d like her, though I doubt the feeling would be mutual; she doesn’t seem the sort who’d suffer still another old curmudgeon gladly.”
3. As a poet and a reviewer of poetry, he liked Mary Oliver. In 1992, about her “New and Selected Poems,” in his column in the Minneapolis Star and Tribune, he wrote: “I have been reading this fellow Ohioan’s poems for two decades. To put it simply: she just keeps getting better and better... But Mary Oliver is no simplistic neo-imagist. With a persistence that would have delighted those didactic nature writers Emerson and Thoreau, she finds deep meanings in these natural images... Oliver’s book is filled with beauty, artistry, vitality and wisdom. Go read it, please.”
In the wake of Mary Oliver’s passing, there are a couple of her poems that are commonly shared. They are great poems, of course; but frequently her work is whittled down to the Pinterest-esque line from “The Summer Day”...
“Tell me, what is it you plan to do / with your one wild and precious life?”
That line, by itself, seems plucked to sell motivational posters when the poem actually encourages us to kneel in the grass, be idle, stroll. Alone, that line gives me anxiety and causes this pisser to defiantly reply, “Anything I damn well please — including nothing at all!” Which, I think, might cause Mary Oliver to say, “Yes, you’ve got it.” And may cause two old curmudgeons to say, “I rather like her.”
So here is a Mary Oliver poem that I haven’t seen shared much. A poem that gave me faith and helped me believe those who have left us — even the old curmudgeons — though unreachable, are present still, like music is present yet you can’t touch it.
Check out the latest installment of our @literaryhub column on reading series, Reading Across America: a sharp piece by Laura Winnick on @tender.table, a Portland, OR-founded series showcasing women of color and stories that interweave food, culture, and identity. Curated by poet Stacey Tran, the series recently held its first Brooklyn event.
The morning came and whispered in my ears,
Come take a walk with me,
Before your pain awakens.
I reached out with both hands and it embraced me.
We walked along the ocean,
I heard the symphony of the waves.
I saw a tree bent over trying to kiss the ocean,
The morning said it’s is looking at the beauty of its reflection.
I saw steps going in to the depths of the ocean,
The morning said they are there to help you climb up.
The Sun shone bright, so I would feel the warmth of the breeze.
The clouds came and the morning said do not worry,
The Sun is still shining.
I felt the rain falling,
The morning said those are just tears of joy from the sky,
For it is happy to see you.
The raindrops became a flood,
The morning said, the sky is overwhelmed with emotions, for you decided to be a part of today.
I smiled and the rain stopped
Then the sky painted the most perfect rainbow.
The morning smiled and said,
The Universe is smiling back at you.
My eyes filled with tears,
I said, I am sorry for being so ungrateful.
The morning said, you were never ungrateful,
You were just blinded by your own thoughts.
I asked, will you invite me tomorrow.
The morning said, I have had my arms open for you everyday,
You just needed to find them. -Manj
“Poetry is not a luxury. It is a vital necessity of our existence. It forms the quality of the light within which we predicate our hopes and dreams toward survival and change, first made into language, then into idea, then into more tangible action. Poetry is the way we help give name to the nameless so it can be thought. The farthest horizons of our hopes and fears are cobbled by our poems, carved from the rock experiences of our daily lives.” - Lorde, Audre
What’s meant for you will happen for you in a way which you could never expect or explain. Nothing can get in the way of it and how it will enter your life. Just be in a constant state of gratitude and focus your mindset on your vision. Believe in it. It’s all happening for you.
22 16614 hours ago
my books To A Girl I Haven’t Met and Equilibrium are available through the link in my bio.
• Conversations // 5
"do you love me or are you just in love with the idea of me?"
i was trying to make something worth eating in the kitchen, when a voice startled me.
i turned back to see her leaning against the refrigerator, her hands folded.
"is there a difference, myra?", i chuckled.
"and what is it?"
"when you love someone, you love just them. there's no replacement, you see. but when you are in love with the idea of them, they can be replaced. quite easily. ideas are temporary."
i kept quiet for a few minutes.
(hah, that's what i always do when it's her putting up the questions. answering her is never easy, i tell you.)
"so i fell in love with the idea of you. and soon after that, when i met you, i saw that idea turning into an exceptional reality. it happened when i realized that the reality was better. so much so that i had to question if i was ever in love with the idea in the first place."
(i hope my answer satisfied her expectations.)