If I’m being honest
I’ve been depressed.
I’ve been like this most of the life I can remember
It’s, honestly, the mood I seem most comfortable with
but I told myself a long time ago I wouldn’t let it linger in my chest
that I’d shake the crows from the lines from time to time
and try to remind myself of the miracle this mess really is
that the shadows are only as dark as the light you surround them with
but one night, this fairly level headed aquaintance of mine said to me,
Poetry is the fastest way
to end a party.
and it stuck with me
because he’s fucking right
a lot of the opening lines I write
could silence a busy room on New Years eve at midnight.
so what am I doing?
am I only taking the stage to rain shit on someone else’s parade?
to remind the world that it’s not all fun?
That somewhere, on the other side of the horizon, the light does fade
the darkness comes, and while everyone has a price, not everyone will have to pay
No, that’s not what I want to say
I stand up here because one night someone said to me
after a particularly passionate performance of a breakup poem that meant a lot to me
that her mother had needed to hear that,
she’d been afraid of the thoughts she’d had for a while
and that I had
found a catchy phrase or two she could repeat
when that’s all she could do
when she just needed to know she wasn’t alone
and remember she could surely weather that storm too.
when maybe she just needed something like that to be true
So, I promise to not go gloomy every time,
to not do my damndest to seek the darkest dredges of my life
and just excercise my demons while folks are trying to have a good time
but I’m also going to speak my mind
to use the only weapons I’ve found to fight the feeling of being alone
to offer the path I found out, and the one I’m still on
because we’ve got nothing if not the shared experience of being alive
of staring down the barrel of life and pulling the trigger time after time, after time
and maybe it hasn’t always gone so right
maybe we’ve lost a few fights
but I’m here to say that maybe that’s the most beautiful we’ll ever be
maybe breaking is what makes making it mean so damn much
we deserve the courage to fall
and if we believe we’re the first to do it, maybe we’ll never take the chance at all
maybe raking our mistakes across the coals is what makes us such relateable miracles
turning them into something someone else sees as hope, a little light in the mist
because the shadows are only as dark as the light you surround them with
sure, maybe I’m depressed,
but I guess I’ve always seen us as kind of like clouds when it comes to this
we grow heavy with the dreams, the heartbreak, the love, the loss, sodden with sorrow
but those that learn to rain,
to turn the pain into something to write, create, paint, or perform,
offer others dodging lightning reason,
those that see nothing but storms a story to believe in
They offer more to the world than just the darkness they carry
they offer hope in the form of a struggle, of a journey
of a road so emotionally wrenching it earned itself a song, a painting, or poetry
they offer proof that you’re not alone,
that someone has been the storm you’ve occasionally found yourself forming
and learned so much that they’re performing the mistake
three nights a week, despite debilitating stage fright and self-conciousness
If I’m being honest.