“Enough” by Andrea Gibson (repost)

Last night I painted a purple tree on my bedroom wall
I woke up this morning in a pile of leaves
The colour of a million different faces
Thinking of that hand that planted the seed
Of the family tree that grew us all
And how each one of us
Will one day fall back to the ground

This morning
I was listening to my heart pound
Knowing with every single beat
That a thousand other hearts were falling asleep forever
On a day they never thought they would
And I know there are tribes of aborigines
That decide how and when they’ll die
After a hundred years or so
They walk into the desert alone
Offer up their breath
And within two minutes soar into a death
As beautiful as their life
And I was thinking I
Will probably never be enlightened enough to decide how I want to die

So this morning
I decided how I want to live
What I want to give
What kind of song I want to sing
Now I’m no longer
Looking at my days like they’re a cup
Calling them half empty or half full
When they’ve always been enough
They’ll always be enough
To fill me up
If I stop thinking so much
And start drinking them up
Until I get so drunk and high on my days
I’ll be walking up to strangers and saying things like
“Hey, I know Jesus was born in a manger
But I woke at dawn today
To watch the earth’s horizon
Give birth to true rising sun of God
And I can’t stop singing hallelujah”

Can you believe we’re here?
Can you believe there are gods somewhere praying to us?
I want to be that nut on a bus
Who’s really a prophet
Telling everybody
“Smoking is bad
Stop it
You might be an opera singer some day
And how are you gonna hit the high notes?”
I wanna live like those high notes
That rise from the throats of old ladies
When they see little babies
Riding in shopping carts
I wanna start somebody’s heart like that
Taking ninety years back
So you’ll have sworn
You weren’t born
Until you saw me
Planting roses
In all the sidewalk cracks
So when you trip
You’ll fall in love
With someone you thought you hated
And now look at what that love has created

There’s a sky
On her faded blue jeans
With a flock of birds
About to fly to my words
And my next line’s
Gonna rhyme with her eyes
And she’ll wink
And I’ll think I’m as beautiful as him

I wanna live my life
Like it’s a little league game
I don’t care if I win
Just wanna watch some little girl
Get her very first hit
Watch her father cheer so hard
He spills his beer
And decides to quit
I wanna split some woman’s
Tired eyes open
Wake her with her own sunrise
So she knows
There’s reason to be hoping
She’ll say
“There are stingers in my heart
But I’m sure that I’m a queen”
And that night
She’ll vow to swarm
Until every angry car horn
Is reborn a song
Of let there be light
Every angry war cry reborn
A song of let there be life

I wanna build the timid teenage boy
A microphone that will
Echo his rhymes
The same way
They echo in his shower
When he’s home alone

I wanna write poems
In the tone
Of your mother’s eyes
When she whispered your name
For the very first time
Poems that will make you go home
Pick up the phone
And call her
While I call mine to say
“You know those lines
On the kitchen wall
Where I grew
Taller and taller and taller
Put a couple more there won’t you?
Cause I’m growing up here”
No longer looking at my days
Like they’re a cup
Calling them enough
From now on
They’ll be overflowing
Since now I’m knowing
It’s up to me
To fill them up

~ Andrea Gibson


Originally posted: 9/6/2014



“The Ubiquity Of The Need For Love” by Ronald Koertge (repost)

I leave the number and a short
message on every green Volvo
in town
Is anything wrong?
I miss you.

The phone rings constantly.
One says, Are you bald?
Another, How tall are you in
your stocking feet?

Most just reply, Nothing’s wrong.
I miss you, too.


—   “The Ubiquity Of The Need For Love,” Ronald Koertge (@ronkoertge)

“Thirst” by Mary Oliver (repost)

Another morning and I wake with thirst
for the goodness I do not have. I walk
out to the pond and all the way God has
given us such beautiful lessons. Oh Lord,
I was never a quick scholar but sulked
and hunched over my books past the hour
and the bell; grant me, in your mercy,
a little more time. Love for the earth
and love for you are having such a long
conversation in my heart. Who knows what
will finally happen or where I will be sent,
yet already I have given a great many things
away, expecting to be told to pack nothing,
except the prayers which, with this thirst,
I am slowy learning.

— Mary Oliver, Thirst


originally posted: 9/27/14

“Pass On” by Michael Lee (repost)

When searching for the lost remember 8 things.

We are vessels. We are circuit boards
swallowing the electricity of life upon birth.
It wheels through us creating every moment,
the pulse of a story, the soft hums of labor and love.
In our last moment it will come rushing
from our chests and be given back to the wind.
When we die. We go everywhere.

Newton said energy is neither created nor destroyed.
In the halls of my middle school I can still hear
my friend Stephen singing his favorite song.
In the gymnasium I can still hear
the way he dribbled that basketball like it was a mallet
and the earth was a xylophone.
With an ear to the Atlantic I can hear
the Titanic’s band playing her to sleep,
Music. Wind. Music. Wind.

The day my grandfather passed away there was the strongest wind,
I could feel his gentle hands blowing away from me.
I knew then they were off to find someone
who needed them more than I did.
On average 1.8 people on earth die every second.
There is always a gust of wind somewhere.

The day Stephen was murdered
everything that made us love him rushed from his knife wounds
as though his chest were an auditorium
his life an audience leaving single file.
Every ounce of him has been
wrapping around this world in a windstorm
I have been looking for him for 9 years.

Our bodies are nothing more than hosts to a collection of brilliant things.
When someone dies I do not weep over polaroids or belongings,
I begin to look for the lightning that has left them,
I feel out the strongest breeze and take off running.

After 9 years I found Stephen.
I passed a basketball court in Boston
the point guard dribbled like he had a stadium roaring in his palms
Wilt Chamberlain pumping in his feet,
his hands flashing like x-rays,
a cross-over, a wrap-around
rewinding, turn-tables cracking open,
camera-men turn flash bulbs to fireworks.
Seven games and he never missed a shot,
his hands were luminous.
Pulsing. Pulsing.
I asked him how long he’d been playing,
he said nine 9 years

The theory of six degrees of separation
was never meant to show how many people we can find,
it was a set of directions for how to find the people we have lost.

I found your voice Stephen,
found it in a young boy in Michigan who was always singing,
his lungs flapping like sails
I found your smile in Australia,
a young girl’s teeth shining like the opera house in your neck,
I saw your one true love come to life on the asphalt of Boston.

We are not created or destroyed,
we are constantly transferred, shifted and renewed.
Everything we are is given to us.
Death does not come when a body is too exhausted to live
Death comes, because the brilliance inside us can only be contained for so long.
We do not die. We pass on, pass on the lightning burning through our throats.
when you leave me I will not cry for you
I will run into the strongest wind I can find
and welcome you home.

Michael Lee, “Pass On”


originally posted: 3/20/15

“grief counseling” by Caitlyn Siehl (repost)

when they first go,
let yourself think every selfish, no-good, dirty, angry, filthy, horrible thought. let the waves of anger wash through you.
let grief do its work.
do not swallow your tongue
when it turns into a blade.
scream a little, if you have to, but don’t swallow that sharp. don’t.
blame God, if you have to. shake your fist at the sky.
let it happen. he will forgive you.
eat. remember to feed yourself.
shower, if you can. sleep.
kiss your loved ones on the forehead.
recognize how and where love still exists.
forgive tomorrow for never showing up for them.
grab your anger by the shoulders and shake it until it crumbles.
be sad. let your heart be heavier than wet jeans.
feel how much weight there is on your chest.
sit in wonder at how you are still alive, how this didn’t kill you, too.
hold yourself like a child. sing yourself to sleep.
go where the warmth is.
dry your clothes in sunlight, then wear the warmth.
this pain is permanent, but, like a scar, it will fade. a crescent moon on your arm.
make no apologies for what you’ve done to survive.
it is okay to miss them every second.
it is okay to howl at the moon.
pain is an animal with sharp teeth and a soft heart.
it will get easier.
time will slip its fingers inside of that gaping hole
and pull the darkness out, little by little.
listen for their voice, whispering,

grief counseling | Caitlyn Siehl(What We Buried)


originally posted: 10/17/14