poems from april

My creative writing class naturally had a creative writing unit. I have mixed feelings about poetry. There are many rules that are “meant to be broken” which blur the lines of quality. If anything is allowed, what makes a poem good or bad? I always feel like I’m doing a good job, and that feels wrong. I want challenge and contestation, and poetry feels too easy. But I wrote poems and turned them in and discussed them with peers and I found that the poems I wrote in two seconds, the ones that felt most instinctual, were the poems I felt slightly proud of. Here are a few poems that I felt paired well together.

get over yourself

Words of wisdom imparted across teacups

A sinking hurt softened by ultimate reality

“Get over yourself,” she said

And she was right.

No one is looking at the way your shirt fits

If your body isn’t thin, they won’t hate you

When we sit at the park

We’re all just basking

As the sun drapes over our backs in heat

When our muscles tighten with fear

We can find rest in knowing

That no one is looking

But when your mind keeps on turning

And your burdens have overflowed

No one will think less

If you ask for help

Get over yourself and the idea that

Your body is anything less than a vessel

Carrying a symphony of 

thoughts and ideas

You are more than what you look like

There are stories written on your skin

But your soul sings to share

Without abandon

So let it.


Then, at the end of my life

I will shatter into the depths

of a life I never got to live

and wonder who I could have been

if only I had stopped

every once in a while

to talk with strangers

and dance a bit longer

and sit on a park bench taking in the sun

while musicians played their spring songs

and learned to love the way my fingers

gripped the pen that scribbled

novels into tattered journals

rather than filling myself with guilt 

for not picking up books 

and speaking too much

and wondering if I was truly loved

If only I had trusted more

and learned to be my own friend 

instead of my worst enemy

without an ounce of regret

I will spend these years wishing I was somewhere else

And I will not regret that

Because my heart has been there all along

I will spend these years wishing I was someone else

And I will not lament that

Because I will become my best self through her

I will spend these years wishing I believed differently

And I will not discourage that

Because I will find comfort in community anywhere

When I move away and live on a new street

I will fall in love with it

Because home is a feeling, not a place

When I become a new person with a new mind

I will keep learning her

Because knowing yourself is an honor

When I have dinner with friends at my table

I will listen to them

Because loving and growing is what we are made for

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