Stained Pages

In my hands I hold my tears,

Along with all my grief and fears.

Sometimes they shine so awfully bright

With their awful silvery light.

Other times so dull and black,

Like the bottom of an empty sack.

The weight is heavy in my palm –

Feeling stressed and so not calm.

Always looking for a break,

Where’s my peace, and where’s my cake?

Life’s not the breeze they told me about:

Here’s to hunger, sorrow, drought.

Happiness has long betrayed

This lonely body here to stay.

Drive the knife across the wrist,

Swallow pills, cross name off list.

And here we are each dawn, each day:

Struggling through, finding a way

Over the next mountain we find the strength to climb,

Somehow manage every time.

No will to vanish, just exist,

Hand with tears, clenched jaw and fist.

Bite back the words, hold back the punch.

It’s all you can do to stomach lunch.

Write it out or carve it in flesh;

Life’s not so simple as you say, John Tesh.

Dislike to hear, dislike to know

The easy joy in which some flow,

When simply living is a chore,

When faking happy is a bore.

It’s all I can do to just press on:

Smile brightly, stifle yawn.

Today I did my hair for you

Doubt you noticed, I’d forget to care too.

Find someone to love you more than you they,

Or you’ll be disappointed every day.

Never feeling good enough,

Life gets hard and fights get rough.

Soon it’s over, just as fast as start;

Healing after becomes an art.

Maybe one day “existing” won’t be hard.

Maybe one day I’ll pick up the shards:

The pieces collected on the ground,

Swept under the rug, but kept around

For the day I’ll find it safe to say

I’m ready to feel, to be put on display,

And someone will take my hand and show me the way,

No more lies: I’ll stop putting on a play,,

And I’ll live and smile wide,

A spring in every step, in every stride,

Suddenly less shame and more pride.

One day I’ll look back and grin

Not recognizing who I’ve been.

For now I’ll wallow, and I’ll get lost

In the murky fog and dusky frost:

So unsure of where I’m going,

Hard to see when it won’t stop snowing.

But when all is white, and not all black

I know hope’s still here, it’s not turned back.

I’ll face the road that lies ahead;

I’ll read a book, I’ll get out of bed.

Maybe tomorrow won’t be as dark.

Maybe tomorrow the trees won’t bark.

Let all the hallucinations leave me be.

I want my peace, I want to see

The world for what it truly is:

Both good and bad, the pop and fizz,

The cake of life I’ll finally eat,

The peace I’ll get – it’ll be so sweet.

I’ve waited so long to just stop hurting,

Maybe to trade for careless flirting.

Rid my veins of jealousy.

Destroy every piece of animosity.

No more enemies, just friends

And joyful acts, for means may justify ends.

For all this I truly work,

Though sorrow be my gloomy quirk.

I want to smile, I want to say:

Life’s a pleasure every day.

Cut out the part that wants to die,

Remove the part that wishes time would fly.

For I know that on death’s bed

I’ll wish for more minutes to be ahead.

No more wanting to end my life,

Finally glad I was a wife.

Embrace the truth, embrace it now.

Keep every promise, every vow.

Talk to strangers, talk to mom.

Drop the grudges, don’t drop the bomb.

One day we’ll grow up big and strong.

One day our life resumé will be long.

Don’t spend time unravelling the tapestry;

Pick up the needle and thread, it won’t go disastrously.

If only to try and not give up,

If only to brim fill up the cup

And toast your neighbour and toast yourself;

Hide regrets upon the shelf.

Take the one life you were given to lead;

Love that life and never plead

For it to end, or you to die;

You may be precious in one eye.

It’s all it takes to move along,

You’re not alone, don’t need to be strong

All by yourself for there’s someone

To listen, to care, who you may summon.

Be it Jesus, mom or friend,

They will be there until the end.

As you can tell, this struggle is tough;

Words are said, but is that enough?

The silence in which fills the space

Sometimes says more than words can place.

So read the hurt between the lines,

The hardships, the sorrows, the “I said I’m fine”s.

Through all the lies, and the grief I’ve caused

I’m most sorry, and so I’ve paused

–How can I clean up this mess?

Surely on my own, it won’t be best.

I’m asking please don’t let me be.

Don’t let me go, I won’t be free.

The chains that bind attack in solitude;

In loneliness, I am their food.

I’m gobbled up and strapped down tight,

Cannot move – it’s an awful fright.

I don’t ever want to live this way,

And that is why I’ve come to say

I’ll write this poem, I’ll write this rap

It’s not a message or a trap;

I just want to spill over the edge;

I want to pour my soul over the ledge.

What most of all I want to share

Cannot be written here or there.

The words inscribed are on my heart;

I cannot translate – I’ve not found the art.

And so from there they won’t depart,

They aren’t so sweet, but not too tart.

Just listen here and place your hand

Over my chest and understand

I’m not so normal, rather odd –

I see agreement; I see you nod –

My whole life I’ll look for words;

I’ll write and write of things unheard,

And still not manage to make it clear

Just the thing you want to hear.

What we want, it can’t be found,

And so this emptiness resounds

Whether in a poem or words unspoken,

Whether in promises whole or broken.

All will come to disappoint,

All will come to smoke the joint

To pass it to the left or right –

Or I don’t know because I was busy picking fights.

I feel the need to stop and say

I’m sorry to someone, every day.

My life must be some kind of mistake;

I stay up to think and next day shake

My head and say, what’s it for?

This life I lead, and do I just want something more?

And then it comes the time to end,

To wrap it up to post or send

Away these foul and idiotic words –

To a friend . . . or to the birds?

Do I crumple them up and throw them out?

Sit and reread to sob and pout?

The ridiculous notion that these can matter,

That these may get someone off the ladder

Or off the bridge or maybe save the kid down the hall,

Don’t you wish we knew they all

Would go home safe and lie in bed,

Sleep ‘til morning, good dreams in their head?

But this will never be the case,

So I’ll try and sleep, and not pace

Like someone is doing on this night.

They cannot rest, they had a fight.

Their life just sucks, they can’t pay bills,

Too much to lose, can’t down the pills

It’s not that easy, that way out.

It’s better to stay, to scream, to shout,

To cry the words and how you need help,

To swallow the pride and cry and yelp

Like the wounded creature humans are –

No matter if they’ve travelled far –

To take the pains and trials here

To face the demons and the fear

To hold the tears in each our hands

To give the liquid to the lands;

To close your eyes and finally rest

Try and lift the burdens from your chest,

To breathe and not hear strangled cries,

To stop the cursing, stop the lies

May be the goal that all achieve

And let the breath be of relief.

The last word be of falling rain,

The cleansing power it maintain,

And wipe the sins from off my head

And I will rest upon this bed

And no more write these wretched words:

Put down the pen and end absurd-

ities, though they remain

Inside this notebook as a stain.

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