Inverting

My world inverts.

I watch my light turn to shadows.

I used to live in the brightness,

But the negative spaces have become tangible & physical.

They have engulfed my bright places,

And I feel the overwhelming absence of light.

I want to let the shadows dance in tandem with my soul,

So I can sit amongst their dark shades & understand what they’re trying to show me.

I want to rest in their inky umbra & discover the lessons I’ve overlooked for so long.

So I can savor the brighter days more than ever, because I felt the beautiful chill of darkness.

But the contrast sends my senses into shock.

The changes & shifts distort my whole being.

Yet, I worship the peace in between the two extremes,

Because that’s where the balance is,

That’s where the lesson is.

But again & again, the dark arrives & the sun sets too soon,

And I must learn to bask in the moon,

As its beams shower down on me- so cold and clean.

And the shadows whisper, “this is the depth you’ve been searching for.”

I dig down inside myself.

So far from the glowing veneer I veil myself with,

Down into the caverns of my negative spaces.

I am inverting.

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Breakdowns & Breakthroughs

Life’s lessons come draped in sadness and fear.

They scream with subtle profoundness and profound subtlety.

The beauty that comes after pain is hard earned,

And it should be recognized as such.

Our existence is a plethora of ups and downs that must be felt in full,

But always remember that the waves come without notice.

Your highest high could soon shift to your lowest low.

Yet, your downfall could lead you to your greatest advances,

And the breakdown could bring forth the breakthrough you’ve been awaiting for eternity.

Meaning

I am the wind who makes the trees dance

The relief of a second chance.

I’m the dust in sunbeams,

The magic in dreams.

You can meet me in the water’s reflections & ripples,

Somewhere between a stranger’s smiling eyes & familiar dimples.

Lost in the happy hellos & painful goodbyes,

The glowing clouds in painted skies.

Hanging in the branches & golden leaves,

In your favorite sweater’s sleeves.

Caught in the river bends,

The laughter between friends.

I live in the pictures in your wallet,

The box of keepsakes in your closet.

You’ll find me in the new beginnings,

The goodnight kisses & sleepy good mornings.

I am floating on the pleases and thank you’s,

The silly phases you outgrew.

I’ll be hidden in a wedding song,

Tucked away in the places you felt you belonged.

I’ll be in the old notebook on the top shelf,

The ballet shoes from when you believed in yourself.

I’m mixed in the colors of your favorite paintings,

Clinging to the words of your favorite sayings.

Cradled in the cobwebs of your childhood home,

Cemented in the cracks in your first skipping stone.

You’ll feel me in your mother’s hug,

Cupping your hands around a warm mug.

I’m the sound of a doves coo,

The flavor of grandmas chicken soup.

I am the smell of fresh brewed coffee,

The heat of a campfire on your shivering body.

I am the breeze who makes the curtains dance,

The comfort in a lover’s glance.

I am love & hope, I am meaning.

I’m what keeps you living and dreaming.

There it goes, the passing moment,

Gone like a whirlwind.

In the blink of an eye, we are in another eddy of time.

We’re just walking the line.

The clock doesn’t stop for a second,

Do we ever really experience the present?

Or has it just been past and future all along?

Because life just flows like a river on and on, flowing ever-long.

Who really knows where the currents go,

When we’re always moving and can’t take it slow.

I feel like I’m just skimming through life, floating through every experience,

Never a force of action and completely void of any influence.

I just exist.

Yet, something inside tells me to resist.

Sometimes I want to implode and turn into a supernova, unconfined,

Leaving a black hole in my wake, only my push and pull left behind.

I want to live with purpose and meaning,

I want to keep loving and dreaming.

I love the way the sun feels on my skin,

But I want to feel that sun within.

My life isn’t a game to be played,

It’s full of passion and intention and I do not want my ripple to fade.

Shifting

I can’t explain it,

The sadness that comes with momentary bliss.

I panic at the thought of the happiness coming to an end,

Because it means that the tears are just around the bend.

The joy and pain both come on so heavy,

It’s a constant struggle, and I feel unsteady.

I’m just drifting through life,

I’m no longer an active force in how I survive.

Everything comes like a slap in the face, things just happen,

By the time I come to, it’s too late to take action.

Every experience just feels like an apparition,

And I hang like a puppet by the strings of permission.

Always waiting for someone to tell me I’m allowed,

I’m by no means bold or proud.

I don’t know how to just be myself,

Without knocking old insecurities off the shelf.

I find myself overwhelmed and scared at the worst times,

So much that I can’t find solace in my rhymes.

There’s never enough, but there’s always too much.

I’m a walking contradiction & I’m losing touch.

I’m dying of thirst, but at the same time I’m drowning.

I feel half-dead, but my heart is still pounding.

Memories begin to lose their meaning,

What happened to hoping and dreaming?

Now, I’m just afraid of what the future will bring,

Afraid I’ll be the songbird who dies, before ever gaining the courage to sing.

Maybe I’m just meant to be a puppet hanging from someone else’s strings,

So I’ll just wait to see which way the pendulum swings.

Aurora Envy

Sensory stargazer watching the northern lights with envy in her eyes,

The sky paints its atmospheric collisions with such grace & beauty.

Rippling curtains of electrically charged universal discord.

Catch a glance of the metaphysical possibilities,

Making reality seem diluted, bland, & weak.

The tangible isn’t as potent & hearty as the intangible.

Conceptual contemplation becomes her drug.

Perspectives, prospects, & possibilities paint perfectly pleasant pictures.

Close-minded tendencies, shallow judgements, and malicious motivations hurt her heart.

Embarking on a constant journey of deep reflection,

Noticing loopholes in the world’s thinking-

Noticing glaring gaps in her own train of thought.

Realizations & discoveries sit impatiently under her skin, like swelling slivers & burgeoning bruises.

Positive changes & new understandings lay beneath the earth’s jewel crested crust like ancient ruins & dinosaurs’ skeletons.

She just has to dig a little to draw out the meaning of things,

Like drawing the marrow out of a bone.

Turning the digging into an art.

An archeological astronomer, who digs down to reach old creations, yet looks up at the heavens towards new horizons.

Intrinsic Worth

Okay….I’m not trying to be sappy (not that fear of being sappy has ever stopped me before)…but at this particular moment, I’m feeling very blessed & I’m going to take this opportunity to express that.
First of all, I’d like to dedicate this poem to my parents (featured on this poem’s theme photo) & my beautiful sister, Ava; all of whom taught me that you can’t get by in life acting like you’re too cool to care. Thank you for being wonderful examples of true empathy, love, respect, & kindness. Ava & I are so blessed to have you as our parents.
Second, I’d like to dedicate this poem to my extended family, my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc., for being further examples of those same qualities…and for just being who you are. You all helped me grow & learn (and you’re helping me do so, *still*).
Third, I’d like to dedicate this poem to my darling, Jesse. Who has rekindled a fire & passion in me that was starting to dwindle. Thank you, sunshine.
And last (certainly not least), I’d like to dedicate this poem to the beautiful, loving Team Sawyer & all the other people who’ve supported me this whole time. Your encouragement, kindness, & friendship means the world to me. I could never ever thank you enough.
I love you all, to the moon & back.
Now, moving on to the poem:

People are mean,

Life is confusing,

And lately, I can’t tell if I’m losing myself or finding myself.

Constantly being hurt, misunderstood, & overlooked by disinterested misanthropists who are afraid of vulnerability,

Because everyone is too scared of the shallow judgements & stigmas that come with caring.

True bravery radiates from the ones who are strong enough to give a damn.

True maturity isn’t just checking off the silly list of expected responsibilities or social ranks.

It’s not just doing the usual things that people praise you for, to get recognition.

It’s not just doing things for outward appearance.

It’s doing the little things that make you a stronger, kinder person,

The things that only the important people notice.

It’s choosing to boldly be yourself, while also staying humble,

And knowing how to love yourself,

Not feel sorry for yourself.

It’s disposing of self pity & stubbornness,

And never pigeon-holing yourself into one way of thinking or living for the rest of your life.

It’s taking hold of every opportunity that comes your way,

It’s learning to accept that you may not agree with something that someone else does.

And knowing that you have to respect other people’s decisions, instead of trying to convince them otherwise.

It’s being understanding when someone reaches out to you.

It’s being intuitive enough to pick up on people’s feelings & know when they really aren’t “fine”.

It’s not belittling people for being tender-hearted & sensitive, & learning how to be sensitive yourself.

It’s knowing when to say thank you & I’m sorry,

Knowing when to say I love you.

It’s learning how to make people comfortable & going out of your way to do that.

It’s walking into a cold, stale room, & knowing how to make it softer & warmer.

It’s seeing someone crying on a public bench & being the one person in the world who stops to ask if they’re okay.

It’s seeing someone who loves you, crying right there in front of you & taking the higher road by choosing to be gentle in response.

It’s laying bear your soul to the ones who matter,

It’s being altruistic enough to accept changes & want to better yourself, not only for yourself, but for others,

It’s knowing that sometimes you have to journey deep within your own mind to face your biggest fears & solve your worst problems.

It’s learning to forgive & forget, but also knowing when to walk away from toxic situations.

It’s taking the time to be genuinely interested in others’ passions & concerns.

It’s learning how to be uplifting & upbuilding instead of making fun of someone for just being who they are,

It’s knowing how to embrace diversity, instead of avoiding or judging things because their different.

It’s going a step further to encourage someone’s unique vocations & characteristics even when they are hard to relate to.

It’s learning how to try to make everybody feel like a somebody.

It’s learning how to break the controlling, constricting ties of unrealistic expectations,

It’s learning how to respect yourself, but never bring others down in doing so.

It’s learning how to love freely.

It’s learning how to release yourself from the fear of being judged.

It’s learning how to tread ever onwards with purpose & good intentions.

It’s learning how to care.

It’s learning how to let go.

It’s learning to be real,

Learning to be human.

It’s learning to live, not just survive.

It’s living to learn.