JADED

 

She sat down; her movements were delicate, slow, and laced with pain.

She tried to swat away the dark thoughts that buzzed in her mind like flies on a carcass.

She sighed, a lonesome howling sound that emanated from the cave within her soul.

She wiped her hand across her exhausted countenance, in a bid to erase the signs of her anguished soul, to no avail.

The scowl that had comfortably snuggled on her forehead was reluctant to leave. 

 

LOVELORN

 

You smile and say hello.

You ambush me with your embrace.

You destroy and wreak havoc on my abode.

Then you walk away nonchalantly.

 

ARDENT

 

Intensely, that’s how she lived.

It never showed up much in her life.

For she always seemed slow and hesitant in her actions.

Yet, intense, she was and deeply so, in her soul.

For she was passionate, loved wholly, and hurt fiercely.

She had no filter, for she wore her heart on a sleeve.

She poured herself to others.

She loved out loud.

 

HOLD ON

 

Heavy heart.

Melting eyes.

Oh, so tired.

But live on, I must.

For each breath is a gift.

 

COUNT

 

Numbers, numbers!

They keep rising and gathering momentum.

They terrify me and leave me hopeless.

I keep wondering if I or any of those dear to me are next.

 

Numbers, numbers.

Am I becoming numb?

Is this how I insulate myself from these enumerations?

These tallies keep rushing in unabated.

 

I freeze them out of my mind, its the only way I can cope.

They don’t concern me yet, so they don’t matter.

They are just numbers, aren’t they?

Though I am trying to deceive myself, I know they aren’t neutral.

 

Numbers, numbers.

I empathize.

I offer my condolences.

I mourn with you, who grieves alone.

 

Numbers, numbers!

You are not alone, though your world has been shattered and turned upside down.

You whose loved one is part of these statistics, I stand with you.

Oh yes, I refuse to allow myself to become numb and indifferent.

 

For even though these numbers seem neutral, they aren’t.

They are proof of our connection.

We are all part of the big family of humanity.

These numbers reflect us all regardless of which continent we inhabit.

 

I, thus, stand in solidarity with my family of humanity touched by these here numbers.

 

DREAD

 

You are faceless, tasteless.

You are without form.

You have no voice.

 

Yet, you are a force to reckon with, merciless you are.

You have brought us to a standstill.

All we seem to talk about relates to you.

 

We’ve given you a name.

We’ve seen what you look like under the mighty microscope.

Yet, you remain an enigma.

 

We neither know how you came to be nor where you are going.

We know not when you will stop ravaging.

We don’t know how to contain you, yet.

 

We are working on it around the clock.

We are making progress towards a solution, though it seems so slow.

We feel so small and helpless at times in your presence.

 

You have no passport, no visa, no identity card.

Yet you traverse frontiers as you please.

Once you are in our midst, you slide, slither unbeknownst to us.

 

We only realize you were amongst us once you’ve walloped us.

Despite all this, we will not cower.

You aren’t the first nebulous entity to terrify us.

 

When hard hit, we tend to shut ourselves in, go into panic mode. 

We shut out and shun those you have contaminated.

We then arise and fight with all we have left till we find an antidote.

 

Just look back into our history, and you will see our exploits.

We rise and fall and fall yet again.

But we rise again though battered and shaken.

 

This time around, it will be no different, dear virus.

 

RESOLVE

 

I seem to have it all together; I don’t.

I seem to be above it all; I am not.

I am terrified.

I am out of control.

I want to hide from it all.

I want to take all my provisions and burrow into an airtight bunker, away from you all.

But I won’t.

I will live confidently despite being afraid.

Though petrified, I will move forward.

For these challenging moments are part of life.

 

HOPE

 

Fear rushed towards her, focused, and determined to topple her.

She tried her best to avoid it to no avail.

Dread rammed into her and brought her crashing to the floor.

She wrestled with fear as best as she could.

She realized that she was no match for her adversary.

Despair mobilized her on the ground, a smug smile on its face.

She gathered the remaining shreds of energy and cried out to hope for help.

She knew that hope was her only rescue.

 

FRAGILE

 

I always thought I had it all worked out.

I had everything under control.

“I plan, focus and move forward; I am the master of my destiny.”

 

That’s what I thought.

Then life happened.

Arrested in mid-flight, I am.

 

I cannot move forward.

It is all spiralling out of control.

I don’t know why.

 

I barely understand how I got here.

Yet, here I am!

My world is falling apart.

 

My body and home are in distress.

I now realize how fragile I am.

I own nothing but the present moment.

 

It is scary.

It is glorious, as I live a moment at a time.

It hurts, for tomorrow might not be mine.

 

PRESENT

 

I look at myself in the mirror, and I am still the same.

Nothing about me seems to have changed.

Maybe my hairstyle, it is not as neat as it was before.

I walk, stretch, and look outside my window.

 

It is the same again.

The sun is shining, the birds are chirping. 

The leaves and flowers are budding. 

The butterflies are floating leisurely, and the bees are buzzing. 

 

Yet, despite the joyous symphony of spring; an invisible enemy lurks in the shadows.

This nemesis awaits, ready to pounce on us at any moment.

My daily habits have changed.

My carefree life lies at my feet blown to pieces by this silent, insidious foe.

 

So how do I live now?

A day at a time, I guess.

How do I find joy?

Make the most of each moment, I think.

 

For you see, I don’t know how to look far into the future.

That great unknown paralyses me.

I will bite all I can chew.

For me, right now, I can only munch on “the present.”

 

Yes,  hour by hour, minute by minute, second by second.

That is all I know to do.

I guess it is enough. 

Isn’t it?

 

HINDSIGHT

 

I always thought I had tomorrow.

Each new day was mine to dispose of at will, or so I thought.

I squandered and wasted today.

I got hung up on yesterday, relieving and regretting my choices.

I was oblivious to the fact that today was slowly withering and dying. 

I woke up to reality.

Yesterday was bitter and filled with “what if.”

Tomorrow was scary, for there was no plan, no vision put in motion.

The scales have fallen from my eyes.

I realize that today is the key that unlocks my tomorrow and gives me a sweet yesterday.

 

CONFRONT

 

It is here, alright.

I tried to hide it from myself to no avail.

I have been running away from it.

I now realize that I have been going around in circles towards it.

So, here I am now.

It is time to face my fears.

No longer am I running away.

 

MIND-SET

 

How do I believe in life, in the face of death?

How do I practice hospitality while I am in self-preservation mode?

How do I share when there is a fear of scarcity?

How do I hope when the future seems so bleak?

What do I hold onto when there seems to be no cure, no solution?

When I give up all hope, what do I have left?

What is life without this frail shoot called “faith for a better tomorrow”? 

“It shall be well,” I tell myself despite the darkness that has descended upon me.

I hold onto the dying embers of my former existence.

I grab hope with trembling, worn-out hands.

“All will be well,” I shout to my haggard, fear-stricken soul.

I don’t know how, I don’t know when, but I will rise again.

We will rise again like the phoenix.

Tomorrow it shall be well; this is my hope.

It is the spring rain that waters the dry, parched, tormented mind of mine.

 

BE

 

Just be me.

Enjoy myself.

Make peace with me.

I aspire to do all these, but I am at a loss.

For you see, it is a whole new world for me.

 

INTENT

 

She knows it is time.

She must act now.

She knows it is a no-brainer.

She has to decide; it is now or never.

 

She must seize the moment.

 

She looks at her barren hands.

She stares at her empty self.

She gazes at her weak hands.

She glares at her imperfect soul.

 

She tears her eyes away and looks up.

She turns inward.

She finally discovers the treasure hidden within herself.

She has finally locked onto her purpose.

 

LET GO!

 

It is quiet.

It is calm.

It is clean.

It is orderly.

 

A feast for the eyes.

A pleasure for the senses.

A lovely aroma.

A delight for the soul.

 

Is it the real deal? I wonder.

 

I scratch the surface.

I look into the closet.

I peek under the rug.

I perceive double standards.

 

Is this perfection a mere veneer? I wonder.

 

I think the tranquil atmosphere is deceptive.

It is the calm before the storm.

It is darkest before dawn.

The deepest wounds are numb.

 

Let it explode.

Let out the captive mind.

Let the skeletons fall out of the closet.

Let the abscess burst from the dormant wound.

 

The only way out is through the dreaded pathway.

The only way to heal is to confront the pain in its gruesome glory.

The only way to thrive is to face the storm head-on.

The only way up is moving forward a step at a time.

 

Rebuild again.

Keep it real.

It may not be perfect.

It is authentic and alive.

 

So, let the hurricane ravage in all its majesty.

Fear not for you will rise again.

You will come out better and stronger.

You have grown through your pain.

 

CRUMBLING

 

She folds, curls, and tightens herself into a taut ball.

She no longer moves onwards.

She isolates herself in a compact, unyielding pall.

 

She clams up and falls inwards.

She rejects, repels, and returns no phone call.

She shuns company and dares not look outwards.

She strains, struggles, and can barely stand tall.

She crumbles, breaks down, and chokes on her words.

She tears hope asunder and lets it fall.

 

Depression and self-doubt bind her soul with steel cords.

Her heartbreaks leave her bitter as gall. 

Fear, guilt, and anxiety come rushing in, smugly dealing their cards.

 

Oh, why for help don’t you call, my dear?

 

CANOPY

 

It is impressive the way lives intertwine.

The way each twig and branch bends and enlace each other.

The roots may be seas and oceans apart.

Yet, when the doors of our hearts fling open, we discard prejudice.

We finally realize that we do click.

We are all the same beneath the surface.

Together we form a lovely canopy of humanity.

 

MUSING

 

I wonder.

I ponder.

I gather.

I scatter.

 

I throw my queries to the four winds.

These questions keep gnawing and nagging at my worn-out mind.

How do I measure the life I have lived?

How do I tell if it was worth the while?

 

When I go off yonder beyond this here time zone;

When I leave this here time frame;

What will I leave behind?

What will my legacy be?

 

Will the space I occupied remember me?

Will the roads I roamed miss me?

Will the people in my life now, remember me?

Will the strangers I chanced, along the paths I trod, take note of my absence?

 

Will they, will you, will anyone miss me?

 

MOVED

 

It doesn’t concern me, but it touched me.

I can do nothing about it, but it shot through my defences.

It is too complicated for me, but it crawled into my soul.

I can not go through this experience for them.

It is their journey and their battle, but why has it infiltrated my mind?

My dear heart, why do you bleed, melt, and yearn to be a change agent?