Do not set out to write a poem. Strip yourself of all the education you think will make you a good writer, and undress all the fluff you believe constitutes a good poem. Write only what is in your heart at this exact moment—every thread of thought and every emotion you have not the courage to feel out loud. Write this. That thing you are afraid to say. Write that. Approach the page vulnerable. Come open. Come raw. Come wounded or come healed, but come bared of what you think poetry is and become the poem instead. Write accurately and precisely every sentiment you have bottled up inside. In writing what is in the most sacred part of your being, and the most intense sections of your soul, you may unintentionally stumble on something beautifully authentic.
Be mindful of how you make people feel because that is what they remember most. Whenever sharing negative experiences be sure there is a lesson to be learned or something to be taught from it. Make sure there is something that you can give back as a result of having shared it. Remember that energy you feed gets stronger. If you feed vengeance, complaints, hatred, and strife, these emotions will get stronger and you will unknowingly begin to project these feelings on others and the feelings you don’t feed like love, compassion, forgiveness, and encouragement get choked out.
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I don’t know how to feel half-heartedly
how to passion
how to love raindrops at a time.
I don’t know how to half
So I apologize.
I am sorry if my sun
burned your skin.
If I came in too hot
or if I am sometimes too cold
a forest of ice
and long blades of frozen grass
bowing under the weight
of bitter winds.
A breath of vapor
and chattering teeth.
I promise you that this heart of stone
is really just flesh
learning to beat one pulse at a time
just don’t ask me to half
I don’t know how to feel half-heartedly
I cannot promise not to love you
for I am all
When it comes to acknowledging what hurts us, the old saying, Deny, deny, deny! comes to mind. Why? Because in real life we don’t want to appear weak, so when we suffer emotional pain, we often stuff it down deep and paste on a smile as if nothing is wrong. It’s no different with our characters, and in both cases, refusing to deal with wounding events carries a steep price.
Unresolved psychological pain doesn’t go away and hiding it only leads to dysfunction and unhappiness.
Emotional trauma is, by nature, painful. When it happens, our feelings are laid bare. So it’s no wonder that last thing anyone wants to do is unpack that vulnerability again to work through it. Avoidance seems better, but it leads to dysfunctional coping methods like bad habits, flaws, biases, and emotional reactiveness.
This type of emotional shielding keeps people and further possible…
We think and we feel and leak emotion in black ink in hopes to build bridges of commonality with others. Those who aren’t afraid to feel. To admit that last night had us hungover in our own feelings and that we sought to heal on paper. So, we sat there. Knee deep in tears from thoughts that marinated too long. The liquid-shaped hurt that rose from someplace we vowed to keep hidden for fear feeling wasn’t allowed. And still, we slipped up and let our thoughts hit the page where readers are left now to sit and mourn thoughts accidentally left on WordPress readers because someone left us a cracked smile. A “LOL” that came out just as twisted and crooked as reciting letters instead of coughing up a belly of laughter. You see, we don’t expect you to understand. You text in a language only your computer understands. For us? We cry out loud, dripping puddles of emotions we miracle into coherent sentences. For those of us who aren’t afraid to bleed real on the page. We feel.
I am not a robot for one. I have feelings and every now and again I do get discouraged. For me personally, these moments arrive during times I find it hard to measure my improvement or lack thereof. Especially when I know I have done all that I could do to ensure the proper outcome. It is always a good thing, in general, to notice every little bit of advancement in our lives. To be able to recognize every step in the right direction, but sometimes it’s just hard to see where that is exactly. “Did I take a step forward or backward?” Despite the rising of the sun, every waking moment is not complete with rainbows and lollypops. As a result, you begin to feel that your work is not of value, that it is hopeless and brought forth in vain because despite talk of inspiration and encouragement, everyday ain’t beautiful. Sometimes I ask myself, “Why did I do that? Why do I do this? It doesn’t really matter anyway. No one listens and no one cares.”
While we have all had (and have) our moments, discouragement can lead to different things. On the one hand, it can lead to a path of giving up, giving in to something of far lesser value, or not trying hard enough. But on a more positive note, it can help keep us humble in areas where we need to get over ourselves. It can help us to see what mistakes we’ve made and what flaws exist. Here’s a fun quote to help you to push back that first impulse to quit, push down that initial fear, push through feelings of helplessness and push ahead. It is then that you are less likely to find someone (or something) to blame, and to instead find a way through.
“Never say that you can’t do something, or that something seems impossible, or that something can’t be done, no matter how discouraging or harrowing it may be; human beings are limited only by what we allow ourselves to be limited by: our own minds” – Mike Norton