...and the words come tumbling...

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Disrupting the journey

I’m disrupting the theme of Journey/Time today to commemorate a… death-niversary.

About a year ago, around this time, an acquaintance passed on unexpectedly before I had a chance to call him my friend. Back then, I had lived in the foolish assumption that since we were only just entering adulthood, we had so much time to get to know one another. 

How wrong I was.

In remembering death, I hope we too, will celebrate life; appreciate the ones still living, and make it a point to meet today if you can instead of putting it off for tomorrow.


When all we have left is your smile…

To Jon, who’s left us; may you be at rest in His arms.

Our first thought of you
Is that unforgettable smile
Your words of encouragement
And life without guile.

Your commitment to change lives
Your passion to sing
Your generosity to others
Your devotion to Him

The days we had to know you
Were little and few
Regretfully, I only knew you best
Standing in funeral pew

You taught us not to take life for granted;
How it could be cut short -
And to treasure all those around us
- Just as we ought.

You taught us to take
Every opportunity we had to meet
To truly pour into each other’s lives;
And share the bitter and the sweet.

Many hearts have been broken
And many tears shed -
You were such an inspiration
In the life that you shared.

So as we lay
Your body to rest
We remember the smile
Of one who loved best.

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Onwards we trudge…

…into October with this weekly original poem (re)publication. haha. 

This entry’s title alludes to the poem I’m presenting today entitled Onwards You Trudge


It hurts for me to see you so
Atop a thorny chair
This bed of nails you made yourself
Has but yourself ensnared

While you with great complacence talk
Upon hot coals your feet doth walk

The path you’ve carved
Cuts lives in places
Where love was given
You spat in their faces

The pains of the past - you wouldn’t let go
Allowing hurt to consume you so

When Love reached out
You scorned her abode
You cursed her beliefs
- Your heart grew cold

Onwards you trudge through slime & mire
Feeding Hate’s destructive fire

Filed under poetry emotional hate destruction self-destruction self-loathing thorn pity scorn

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The Show Must Go On

The fourth in my series of old poems is A Moment Like… 

What makes this one special, I guess, is that we all have such moments. The good thing about moments like this is that, well, they pass; moments are as their name suggests — momentary. 



There was a moment
I felt I couldn’t breathe:
like a weight was on my sternum;

A rock too heavy to heave.

Like a unicycle on a tight rope,
Or an elephant on a ball
My life felt like a circus act -

A memory I abhor.

No one else had made me feel this way
- no, I’m sure you didn’t intend-
But somehow, somewhere, something, someone
Smote my heart like a strong hand.

The phobia grips me

Even now

In your absence I’m still silenced
Reduced to similes

No smiles

No straight talk
A suffocated honesty
A struggling rhythm
A failed rhyme

A fragmented poem
A still ambiguous line
A thought so muffled, so hidden, so

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A Moment of Time

Today’s poem is: Lying Awake

Once again, this seems to be another poem about an aspect of time. Seems to be a common theme in my poems… lol.


As dawn draws closer
Eyelids grow heavy
A yawn ensures
Dry eyes turn teary 

Bloody-shot and wide
Tired and weary
Yearning for the sandman’s
Entire sand query

Sunlight encroaches 
Slowly but surely
Bedclothes beckon
Strewn and unruly

Drained yet conscious
Down but not out
"Who needs sleep?!"
Sounds a defiant tout

Lying awake
Wishing for dreams
Of heaven, of bliss
Of some sweet kiss

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Tick Tock, Tick Tock…

To continue in the theme of time, today’s poem is: Clock Hands Turn. 


As confetti falls
Our bridges burn
Old times are lost
As clock hands turn

The words we shared
Now disappear
Your pen eliminating 
Those once held dear

The years we had, now lie unlaced
That moment that covenant was signed
Our world - erased
Memories once entwined

Buried in time
Never to resurface
The laughs, the tears
That old storage case

As confetti falls
Our bridges burn
Old times are lost
And clock hands turn
A veil is raised
Smiling eyes are met
Vows are exchanged
With kisses wet.

Our lives go on
Continually diverging
Old loves long lost
Never more, merging.

Filed under poetry time clock milestones love lovelost oldflame pathsdiverging

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Some Romance

Today’s poem is something more of a combination of the themes of time and romance, in commemoration of an old anniversary date (now forever replaced by another. haha).

Without further ado, here’s Kisses Planted…


Kisses planted in a generous cluster
With all the sweetness love could muster
Decked in Hope’s brilliant gem-like luster 
Cheeks blushing a ruby fluster

Oh my love, my spell-caster!
If only time could pass a little faster
To the day our beloved pastor
Will declare us mistress and master; 

The day we stand before the altar
To pledge a love that will not falter 
Making vows that’ll never alter
Come flaming hell, or raging high water. 

So here I am, upon my bed
With but a pillow for my head
To travel through dream’s cascade - 
A ‘goodnight’ I must, to you, bade.

Filed under poeetry recollection sweetdreams dreams love devotion adoration affection romance

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Recalling Poetry

Had a sudden desire to look back at poems I wrote in the past, and was pleasantly surprised (as well as disappointed) at some of them. Felt like sharing a few meaningful ones again — so this is the first of a series recollecting old poems I wrote. 

To start off this series is The Paradox of Dichotomy — a rather apt choice. 


The End, is the Beginning;
A Beginning, is an end;
Destruction, and Creation;
A cycle few comprehend.
Death, is Life;
Without Darkness, there can’t be Light;
To Leave, is to Enter;
To Sleep in one world, is to awake in another.
The paradox of living
The paradox of dying
The Paradox.
A timeline is linear
Time, is not.
An Event, a Sequence, 
A Chronology,
A Cycle.

We dichotomize our world
Into Black and White;
Good and Evil;
Weakness, and Might.
We work to put into order
The chaos without
As if it’ll displace
The chaos behind that pout.
We part asunder
Things that co-relate;
Thesis and antithesis,
Love, and Hate.
Things that - without the other
Have no identity to compare;
Without their polar opposites
They’re nothing but empty air.
The End, is the Beginning;
The Beginning, is the end;
Destruction, and Creation;
The rebirth of the same old Plan. 

Filed under poetry recollection paradox beginning end cycle linear life death alphaandomega timeline

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boardwalkk asked: I dropped out of university after only six months of taking English. I thought it was what I wanted to do, and it was up until I started studying it. I hate learning about some guy's opinion on a poem three hundred years ago, all I want to do is write. But then I feel like, without a degree, will anyone want me? If I wanted to be an editor, no one would even look without a college diploma or something. I feel hopeless, but writing is the only thing I'm decent at. I feel lost :(



(You’re a Canadian, so this is new territory for me. For the following advice, you can insert, wherever you deem appropriate, various references to ketchup chips, Tim Horton’s, Quebecois sovereignty, and so on.)

My heart breaks for you, @. I’ve been where you are. And much like a virus or the inability to enjoy cilantro, there’s no magic cure-all for uncertainty or self-loathing. While you may live in a magical cloudcuckooland of socialized medicine (inc., I imagine, mental healthcare), there’s no single-payer wisdom. Which is why you’ve got some big choices to make regarding your plans, your budget, and your time.

I can’t make those choices for you, but there are a few truths about higher education, literature (and the study thereof), and growing up that I believe translate to Canadian. And because he’s an extremely disarming and charming presence, they will be illustrated with Miles Teller gifs.

TRUTH #1: You’re definitely not always your best self when you’re young.

Unfortunately, for a while, the below gif is gonna be only partially true.


The post-high-school years are a lot of things for a lot of people, but what they’re not is entirely easy or fun. You won’t be awesome. You’ll be flying blind. You won’t necessarily enjoy who you are because you’ll be scared you’re not working on what you need to become the person you maybe think you should be. You’ll enjoy things that in a year will cause you to become mortified.

Like a lot of creative types (inc. yours truly), there’s no quantifiable 5- or 10-year plan for you, no “write x, y, z, be published by this person, determine 15 beautiful metaphors, and render beautifully and savagely the truth of (insert significant experience here) = professional success and satisfaction”. There are some simple things you can do; keep writing, learn to devote yourself to boring but useful tasks (like editing, research, and reading books you hate).

But it doesn’t matter whether it’s a college education, a job, a twilight-of-the-soul existence outside of the job market and/or within the working poor, gap year(s), marriage/children, or being a member of the hidden homeless: you’re going to be confronted by things that not only aren’t enjoyable, but don’t seem useful no matter how you look at them. This is inevitable. You carve out a more refined (and bruised, and scarred) version of yourself by bumping and scraping along this maze, and if you choose not to engage at all, to withdraw entirely into yourself, then this is your choice, but it’s a coward’s choice.

And as for studying English…

TRUTH #2: English educations, optimally, are meant to take the reader and writer down a peg by providing them with perspective, allowing them to understand the importance of the written word beyond how it effects just you.

Nobody strolls into an English education naked and devoid of experience or preferences.


You’re going to be bored or dislike the things you’re assigned, ESPECIALLY in the first couple years where you have to filter through the general literature curriculum; the classics, boring-as-fuck novels, the unreadable criticism, and so-far-removed-from-relevance-it’s-stunning poetry. That’s because you come to this education knowing what books/authors/styles you like; hell, that’s the reason you wanted to study lit in the first place. 

I had a teacher (a Canadian, actually!) who got fired from my high school for explaining to his supervisor that the reason he would state to the students that he disliked the curriculum was that he didn’t think it necessary to like literature to study it. “Would you ask an oncologist if they like cancer?” he said. 

Literature shouldn’t be purely likable. Maybe less than 15 percent of the shit I read at college was capital-F Fun. But the history of the written word and accompanying creative thought is not a happy story. It’s one of toil and futility and depravity and idiocy and cruelty and bigotry and murder and endless underground caves of depression filled with creepy eyeless fish. And literature’s constantly decried as a soft or useless pursuit for milquetoast academics who’d spasm in shock when confronted with “reality”, as if the collection of a certain amount of money or knowing how to use an oscillating spindle sander or hoisting a protest sign or caring for the sick and needy are the only roads to a greater understanding of the world and its inhabitants.

Literature shows you that every time you write something you are a minuscule part of this huge roiling incidental history of folks trying to squinch their thoughts into the point of a pen. And it shows you ways to get bigger, and where to fit in, or where to fight back.

When it comes down to it, we all search for beauty and meaning. Some in medicine, some in manual labor, some in drugs, some in coping mechanisms, and you in books. You don’t need to do anything specific to mine inspiration for your writing, but you gotta do something. Studying literature in a structured setting forces you to learn the many and conflicting rules and ideas that have governed you in ways you never understood. Once you learn the rules and ideas, you’ll be able to see what part of the writing world needs your presence and contribution.


TRUTH #3: If you ultimately decide your time, money, and energy are better spent earning a degree vs. the extra professional wrangling and hustling required by searching for a job that won’t demand a degree, go for it.

Yes, not everyone who’s got a degree is skilled. Yes, not everyone who’s got a job deserves it over the rejected candidate. Yes, often a degree is just a signifier that you spend a certain amount of time doing something sanctioned by an academic body to a certain standard, which employers use as a stand in for “can show up on time and spell good”. So if you decide college isn’t for you right now, then go do something else. Work. Make friends. Travel someplace alone. Stay busy. Your friends are motion and action. Your enemies are stagnation and circular depression. The world has no map. But you do have access to the internet. And you have a goal (to write). And if you keep the machine in your skull running, and keep your body healthy, and connect with the right and supportive folks, then opportunities start to pop out at you, and your vision starts to sharpen, and the next step isn’t so far away.


Good luck/Canuck!


I wanted to chime in briefly on this one. If you do decide to go back to school, remember that not all English degrees are created equal! Sure there are certain basics that you’ll probably have to take anywhere, however many programs offer a wide variety of choices.  If the romantic poets aren’t for you, consider a school that has a strong program in modern, postmodern, and/or contemporary literature. Heck, some programs even have a strong emphasis on experimental fiction (which can be very trippy, but if that’s your thing…) Also, consider the different requirements for a creative writing major. In some cases, you wouldn’t have to take as many pure literature classes.

Sure, there are going to be books, classes, or projects that you hate, but keep in mind that to make a living writing you will, on occasion, need to be able to write about something that you really don’t care about. It’s a good skill to learn.

That said, I agree with DIP that there’s no one path to being a successful writer/human being. Sometimes experience can replace formal training in the publishing world.