The Lingering Winters of The Heart

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When a loved one departs
Winter submerges our hearts in snow

Our nights become tearful
Our mornings mournful

But then
Spring inevitably arrives
Bringing along sun and life

If the sun
Doesn’t melt away
The snow engulfing our hearts

It’s we who won’t let it
It’s we who reject life

For we equate
The death of a loved one
To the death of ourselves

Homelessness of The Self

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by Jordan Sanchez

During the past few months

The discomfort, the homelessness, homesickness

Contaminated the places I was in

Making me move from one room to the next

One city to another

Now it has spread to my veins

I feel stiffness enveloping my limbs

Like this body is no longer mine

Changing places is not enough anymore

I feel the urge to change my clothes

Yet even that doesn’t ease away the suffocation

Because what I need is to get out of this skin!

I have no option but to succumb and resign

To the dull reality that

I have no home

I have no self

I have no peace

Yet I can’t relinquish the hope

That one day I’ll have what I need

I’ll be my own home

I’ll cultivate a self that I love being

And I’ll build my own fountain of everlasting peace

 

If Words Were Home

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who am i without writing?
who are my friends if not words?

lately i’ve been actively
straying away from this page

sabotaging myself
away from my joy in life

writing is the very meaning
of my existence

through it, and only it,
can i know myself and
make sense of my world

so why am i not writing?
what part of me is trying
to steal this away from me?
what part of me can be so opposed to me
that it dares targeting my source of purpose?

it’s been a year
since i started writing a novel

one month of writing
and eleven of passively yearning
to return to the page to free myself
from this fictional world that occupies
my every moment

i am bereaved, broken;
an orphan in this huge world,
a foreigner in my own body

and only words,
only the act of writing,
of imagining and reflecting,
can mend my pieces
and bring me back home

1397 Days Later.


when i looked at the cloudy sky today,

i saw you smiling.
i closed my eyes in delight,
but i could still see the light.
my heart brimmed with love
like a cup filling from the ocean.
it connected me with you,
and with God, too.
now i feel a delicious togetherness;
an unceasing lovingness.
it comes from God,
and it has the shape of your smile.

Home

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by Musab Al Rawahi

I was born here,
But is this my home?

If it is—if it must be—
Then why doesn’t it feel like so?

When I travel,
I don’t feel like an outsider
As much as I do in my own hometown.

Yet when the flight lands back here,
I feel as though my heart is a jewel
Being placed back into its safe box
Like this land is two open palms
That await my arrival
And spread to embrace me
Into eternal safety.

I must accept
That I am forever torn
Between being from but not of,
Being part here and part elsewhere.

On a Plane

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by Vincent Versluis

On a plane, I am nowhere and everywhere all at once.

I am not the person time and space dictate that I am. Instead, I am a combination of all the versions of myself that I have embodied in the 18 years of my human existence. It’s 2017 rather than 2019—my happiest year rather than my most challenging yet; it’s a long summer vacation rather than a fleeting spring break; I’m going to a new city and sleeping in a hotel room rather than home in my own bed; I’m content rather than floating in a sea of melancholy; and instead of completely lost, I am grounded in my trance of not being in one fixed spot on the planet. Instead of it being a few weeks before my 19th birthday, it’s a few weeks after my 30th; instead of anxiously standing at the beginning of my life, I’m in the middle with the satisfaction of having fulfilled significant accomplishments and lived some of my dreams; instead of being just a student struggling with her sense of self, I am the strong independent woman that knows, accepts, forgives and respects herself enough to cast away the shadow of darkness that had been weighing over her for way too long.

On a plane, I am no one and everyone all at once.

Note To Self

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by Todd Diemer

Focus on this precise moment. Every single instant. Just stay here. Ground yourself. You have nothing to worry about. As long as you stay in the given moment, you won’t feel that drowning feeling. Just stay here. You’re safe here. You don’t have to know everything. You don’t have to know everything about who you are; you don’t need to have your whole future figured out. It’s okay not to know; it’s fine not to feel strong and confident sometimes. There are periods in life that are for stillness, and there are periods for action in which doing things feels effortless because it’s the right time to set things in motion. Right now you’re in the stillness stage. Don’t worry about the rest. You’ll rise. Those ideas you’re receiving will materialize. You just observe. It’ll all come together perfectly.

Out of Town

this house is huge
filled with empty space

i can feel the rhythm of my heart
i can almost hear the echo of my breath

mom and dad
are out of town

my mind can’t stop wondering
if this is how dead our house would be

when they’re gone
on a one way ticket

to
the other side

i can’t bear the thought
my throat is clogged with a lump of tears

what is life
without mom sitting in the living room?

what is life
without dad’s loud laughter in the afternoon?