In college, I remember telling my poetry professor that I didn’t like editing my poems. That it felt like I was taking some of its magic and significance away. That I preferred it raw and “real”. It felt watered down, too technical and unemotional, and not as impactful when I would go in to tear it apart to “fix” it.
I guess the mistake on my part was thinking that this process of editing is anything like “fixing”. I also think that it correlates to my childhood wounds where I felt my mom was always trying to make me into someone I wasn’t by telling me to change this thing and that thing, all these parts of me. And so to take something, like a poem, that was seemingly poured from my heart, and trying to make sense of the process of editing to make the piece “better”, just made it feel like it was not good enough to start with.
And this was the problem too, I think, because when we are always sensitive to not being accepted or seen, we perhaps, some of us, cling even more to certain parts of our identities. Rebelling and exaggerating and defending what feels “real”. I felt those first drafts of my poems were real. So I didn’t want to do anything that would signify erasing it, since I have felt erased all my life.
Continue reading The Shame Behind the Creative Process
there are stars that revolve
around an unstudied black center,
swinging at 100 miles per second.
there are molecules on my skin
that dance chaotically in heat
when i am involved in something
bringing me closer to my center
grand or small, the extremes
of all scales tend to end up
looking roughly the same.
maybe all that you are is more
than all the things you are not.
and maybe you’ve got to start to trust
the uncertainty of discovering
this moreness rather than obliging to
who you were told you were not
and should act like instead.
the weight of all that you aren’t
is easily seeable. but the glorious
abundance of all that you are
can only be felt, and relinquished into.
Vulnerability is like drowning, but finding out you can breathe, albeit in a different way. And although some people find this out, it still can be a discomfort to not resurface and not go back again to the kind of air and pressure they were used to all along.
But vulnerability is really submerging all of you, and letting all the masks and layered insulation you’ve had in place slowly loosen and release under water, being carried away because it’s no longer needed.
You don’t experience yourself clearly when all the mirrors you’ve placed around yourself only reflects the small of yourself that you were comfortable being uncomfortable with.
Tenderly living is like the sun’s shine. How it continuously radiates but can never peak back inside at it’s own core to define it. It just lives from it. Breathes from it. Always in touch with it.
And what feels like fire to your lungs at first later becomes what you know is necessary. Because it forces you to stay in between each moment instead of trying to conquer each moment, with swords and armor and vigilance that only tires you out at the end and beginning of each day.
Learn to be submerged. Learn to breathe inconspicuously. Learn to love and be loved in a different way.
if everything is a cycle.
if your emptiness is a cycle.
if the darkness is what you
keep returning back to.
that so is your joy.
so is that love you feel
inside yourself opening up
more and more, little by little.
so is the natural current then
that unceasingly washes you back
to the familiar grounds
of your wildly unrelenting
it’s a strange thing when in order to prove that you are strong, you have to deny what it is that makes you most human. as if the sound of your heart racing will echo into all distances and make you suddenly sniffed out as prey to be capsized.
we slow our hearts down so much for this as if to make it seem like we don’t even own one. as if the racing of our minds and other things are better. as if the flush on our skins will make us too susceptible to being found out. found out for what ? for having emotions and inner lives, which needn’t be a secret anymore in this day and age. we are equipped and have always been equipped with something that will lead us ultimately out of the dark.
Continue reading musings of the heart
to find yourself in an unreality
that keeps being woven by all
those surrounding you.
this is a declaration
of no longer having the quilt
be repeatedly pulled over your head.
since – it might be a shock to hear –
you are not delirious with the fever
have an infinite fervor
for the richness of life.
born with a dancer’s delicateness,
you thin ankles and birdlike feet
were always too ready
to just fly away.
as if you could not let the divinity
in you permeate your whole body,
to reach down to the soles
of your feet, to be stood in.
there will always be those who
are too afraid of the ones who
generate too much electricity.
but this is not something to keep
to yourself, and it is not something
that can be easily stolen out
from underneath you.
the safe haven you preciously maintain
to travel back and forth to and from
needs to be the wings, excavated,
that flees you not from yourself
or your experience,
but from this nest you’ve found yourself in.
after all, your true fear
is that you really just might be able to.
it will take you a while
to get used to the warmth
of your own body again.
it will take some restless nights,
fighting sleep until you get used to
being in the dark again.
it will take some gentleness
from your own touch to not close
the gaps of thoughts or desires,
but to let love perfume out of you,
out from your pores, like the dewy
aura of a genie emerging from a lamp.
the worst of it is over. it still doesn’t mean you don’t have to sit with the havoc that it wreaked though. it still doesn’t mean that you don’t have to go around picking up the pieces, trying to salvage the salvageable, seeing what you can mend and what you cannot.
the pertinent points of it that categorizes such a destruction is no longer here, but we sit in its wake all the same. we sit here, stupefied for a little bit, disoriented for a little bit, still weighed down by the mess that rearranged our nervous systems a little bit. it takes a while to collect ourselves and most importantly, to start facing the reality that things will never be the same again.
but that in itself doesn’t have to be a bad thing. you can’t go back to the same life you were leading because as you can see, that one is already torn up. that phase has passed. it always is going to be the road with all signs pointing to a second life now. that is your true north now. everything is waiting for your ground to grow with more fertility this time.
there is a heaviness that such chaos brings, but it can be clipped into paper birds and paper airplanes and be flung out to leave lightness for yourself and breadcrumbs for others. a snowing of what has survived. the worst of it is over now. but that doesn’t mean we stop wanting more and carving better for ourselves.