What I learned from running Cross-Country in Jr. High

In the seventh grade,
I joined cross-country.
Not because I wanted to,
but because my best friend wanted me to.

I lost every single race
that I ran.
But in the end –
I never gave up.

When I was a kid,
My mom wanted me to perform.
I wanted to do sports.
But I did what she wanted.

I performed in every show,
And every voice-over.
Because I wanted to make her happy –
I never gave up.

A lot of things in my life,
I have done for other people.
Because I am afraid to say no,
Because I don’t want to disappoint.

But no matter what I have done,
I have always done it fully.
I have never stopped,
I will not give up.

Running cross country in seventh grade
Taught me more about life than it did about sport.
It doesn’t matter
if I always place last.

It is important to stay in the race,
To stay with the team.
To keep running,
No matter how tired you are.

Because there is always a finish line,
And it feels so good.
And eventually one day,
You may learn to love the race.

Because I can run now,
And I may be slow,
But it’s something I can do.
And it’s something for me.

I can say no to people.
I can say yes to me.
I can keep running the race,
Because you don’t have to be first
To win.

-cdk

She Doesn’t Know – SUBMISSION

So, I received this anonymous submission – with the note “A picture to go with the poem. this one’s for you, C!” Now I have emotions and stuff. My heart feels happy and sad at the same time. I have so many feels, one of them being love. Thank you person. This poem is called “She Doesn’t Know”

She doesn’t know
How wonderful she is.
She has that heart of gold
Neil Young sang about.

She doesn’t know
How funny she is,
Though the joy of her presence
Makes belly laughs abound.

She doesn’t know
How kind she is.
But I see her think about others,
Even others who’ll never deserve her.

She doesn’t know
How sane she is,
Even when writhing with pain of life,
And voices and people unnerve her.

She doesn’t know
How beautiful she is.
Her love, her tears,
her strength, her scars.

She doesn’t know
How strong she is,
Though perseverance and fight
Have become like her art.

She doesn’t know
How important she is,
How her existence
Touches so many lives.

She doesn’t know
How destroyed I would be
If she was ever no longer
A part of mine.

jess

-Anonymous

 

Why I’m Angry – SUBMISSION

This is another anon submission, pretty powerful. Makes me sad. Glad B could share.

People wonder why I’m angry.
But clearly they are all stupid.
Cus clearly, I’m a boy.
I’m a boy and a girl’s body.
And it’s not fair to me,
Because she gets to live her life
And I’m angry.
I want her to be angry.
She doesn’t care.
You could tell her heinous shit
And it wouldn’t matter,
Because unless I whisper to her
Unless I come out.
That girl has no feeling.
I want her to be angry,
She needs to die.
And I can help her with that.
I’m angry at everything,
But mostly I’m angry at her.
And so Blade to her skin,
Or those hoarded pills I’ve been stashing.
I will come out.
Cus I’m mad.
At her, and at everything else.
She deserves to die,
For everything that has happened.
I’m not so mad
That I’m a boy in a girl’s body.
I’m mad that she can’t hold
The anger she promised to hold.

-B.

Once Upon a 2011 – SUBMISSION

This submission was sent in anonymously. It is incredibly powerful, and I want to say that it may be triggering. However it is so real. Love to (az)

 

There’s a story I used to tell
About two kids who knew each other well
One thing led to another and they had an affair
It was shameful, regretful, and I’d end it there.

There’s a tale I used to spin
About a life years ago I’m still stuck in
Where he took advantage and it ruined my life
For a while and I’m still making it right.

There’s a word that I’ve been starting to use
About betrayal of trust, lack of consent — it’s “abuse.”
And when I told it I thought I was screaming aloud
Everything I’ve always felt that I’ve come to know, now.
But it didn’t resonate, it didn’t get through
It made me feel more alone than I even used to.

There’s a word I’ve implied, now I write, now I’m saying
To clarify the vague hints that I’ve been conveying.
It’s the story I have always had inside
It’s the feelings I’ve always been pushing aside
It’s the only explanation that ever made sense
It’s been denial, reluct, fear. Confidence.
It’s the truth that I finally accept I can’t escape.
Do you hear it yet? Do you see me? I was raped.

(az)

Reality – SUBMISSION

Cheers to my friend Skye who submitted this poem! I am inspired everyday by the fantastic work I receive.

Dreams of days full of laughter
And nights without pain.
Dreams of memories that make you smile
Or maybe don’t make you cringe.
Dreams that come and go,
But never let me go.

I hold on for something to change,
But nothing ever changes.
My dreams are just dreams,
And reality is constant.
I close my eyes in hopes of better,
But open to the truth.

Dreams manipulate and make fun of,
Regardless of your cries.
The past can never change,
And it seems as though I’m living there.
But every night I dream of life,
A life I have not lived.

-Skye R.

Inspired by Sylvia Plath

Prompt: “I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.” – Sylvia Plath

******
I’m sitting, but I can’t sit
Because I can’t breathe
And my body won’t stop moving.
My heart won’t stop beating.

Why won’t it stop beating?
I want it to stop.
To stop.
To stop.

It’s racing.
Faster, faster, faster.
I hear it pound.
My chest nearly explodes.

I have fear and nausea
And my heart doesn’t care
How the rest of my body feels.
How my mind feels.

My heart beats faster,
Racing nobody but itself.
I’m sweating,
My palms – they’re moist.

And I hear my heart brag:
I am,
I am,
I am.

And I hear my mind cry
I’m not,
I’m not,
I’m not.

I don’t know who is louder.
Who is more convincing?
Is it my boastful heart?
Or my tearful brain?

Both cause my body to keel,
And I writhe in pain,
My temperature rises.
I am shutting down.

I try to block out my brain,
And everyone inside,
What they have to say.

I want to take a deep breath,
And listen to the old brag of my heart.
I am, I am, I am.

But I can’t catch my breath,
Because my heart brags so viciously.
With each beat,
My body shutters.

My brain is right.
I’m not.
I’m not.
I’m not.

There are no deep breaths,
As I sit on the floor.
Legs tucked in,
Wrapped up in my arms.

My eyes shut,
I reach for the only thing to ground me
A chair nearby.
I try to connect to the rug beneath me.

I need water.
I need people.
I need anything,
But a brain and a heart.

Siblings fighting
I am,
I’m not.
Leaving my body to suffer
From their conflict.

As everything settles,
My brain and my heart disagree.
And for now that’s okay.

They will fight again,
And it won’t be long from now –
But they will agree to go their own ways
Until a SAFE resolution can be had.

I sit up from the floor,
I take a deep breath,
And I listen to the ensemble within my brain:
I’m not, I’m not, I’m not.

I breathe again.
I want to trust the old brag of my heart.
And hold on to its words:
I am, I am, I am.

-cdk

circa 2.2015

Trying to add some more media to the site. Here is a mandala I drew with a poem I wrote a while back:

mandala

My mind is as crazy as the weather, and as powerful as the trees.
On a Sunday, where the lights are off –
and the blinds are drawn.
In spite of fear and loudness.
There is a brief moment for focus.
A brief moment where nobody watches,
and then it all returns.

-cdk

Home-girls anxiety…. – SUBMISSION

I am so grateful for this person, who continually graces us with their amazing writing
She walks into a room still…..
OK..I’m ready…
Been prepping all morning for this moment..(but trying not to)……and probably in her sleep..
Unbeknownst to her
The drive alone…….
SOMETIMES…. going from point A to point B still…
It can be draining….so tiring….
From the battle…..—-
Sooooo…Fast fwd —– >>>>>

She’s at her destination now…

BUT….what she hadn’t counted on was that……. The anxiety had built.

She thought she was fine,,

BUT…regardless of the prep work..of not wanting to it be…..
There it is….

It’s like an opening and closing door…sooo fast sometimes…not visible to her keen eye…
It’s like ….where….when….how…..
It’s called anxiety…..—-

It’s not as bad for her as when it first started..
But….It still bothers her…and she in essence it bothers her more…..because she doesn’t want it to bother you…—-just sayin’

Sooooo,,,
She really doesn’t want you to TELL HER TO GET OVER IT…
If your going to tell her to just get over it…than you don’t really know her at all…
It at times is just…NOT….. that simple…..
BUT——-SHE will work it out…..
Always does….
Just give her her space….

To ALL who struggle w/ anxiety……——-
Especially my home-girls—–
You are not alone….
Hang in there…..and by ALL means ….First and Foremost….KEEP the Faith
A sister..—-

-C.P.

i need to go.

Our current disposition:

The pain is like a fire
streaming up my system.
Burning my insides
and crumbling them down.

And though he is quiet
others are loud.
Is it worth it to feel this pain?
I still feel like I must go.

But I know she is hurting too,
And I don’t want to add to her pain.
Can I go silently?
So that she is unaffected?

I need to go.
I need to walk
Because I see things happening
And I know they are real.

And the nightmares haunt me,
And this pain…
This pain in my legs and above –
It burns.

So let me switch,
Let me walk away.
Let me end this.
So that they all settle down.

And she can have peace
From me.
And I no longer worry or bother her.
Everyone can be free.

-c et al

My Sister <3

Dedicated to Nindashell

My sister is my keeper.
She keeps my secrets.
She keeps my dreams.
She keeps my love.

Today is my sister’s birthday.
Therefore,
Today is a historical day.
There is only one of her.

And somehow God put
Perfection in her.
Perfection in a beautifully
Flawed way.

She is perfect
Because she raised me
And protected me the best a sister can
who is growing up while teaching another to do the same.
I think
that she succeeded.

And her flaws
Only make her more perfect.
They make her human.
Smart, hard-working, human

My sister raises three kids,
My sister loves with more than just her heart.
My sister is a hero
To her family and ours.

She has always been my keeper.
My sister.

Homework hotline.
Pluie.
Futon tears.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
Nonsense to other people,
But to us –
These things are little foundations.

Guicas and Big Kit Kats.
Trips to Sheetz and Michaels.
Snuggles and inappropriate jokes.
My sister is my best friend.

She is my best friend.
My keeper.
She raised me
And taught me to love
The way she loves everybody else.

-cdk