to exist.

If you haven’t carried a baby that knows not to cry
Because no one has ever been around to soothe its tears
If you haven’t watched tears flow down the cheek of a girl
Who watched her mother burn to death
If you haven’t seen houses crumble and people scatter
If you haven’t taken the last train home at a time
When the last of the human clan are famished for rest
If you haven’t slept on bunk beds and metal floors
walked hungry long enough to not
hesitate to share a strangers food
If you haven’t met enough people to know that
Humanity does not metamorphose
By the color of the skin
Or the height of their homes
That leaders and beggars all cry the same tears
Out of the same broken hearts
If you haven’t conversed with the blind man and the deaf girl
Long enough to know
You’re no better
And that all we humans can do
is to give and give each other
Then my darling
You’ve seen too little
Too little of the world
To say you exist.

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to breathe.

When I was eight I wrote a poem about pain like a stone

Because we had moved from our pretty house to a neighborhood foreign to my eyes

When I was ten I carved my heart out through a pen

All the loss of missing a mother splattered on paper

When I was twelve I fell in love with essays

I found it hard to find full stops for an end to words

When I was fourteen I kept two diaries because I found out

Words were a necessity for my survival

When I was sixteen the last page of my every notebook

Was splattered with poems and thoughts that couldn’t stay still

Today you say I am too deep for you, too dark

I think too much; I live in sighs

But how can I explain to you

That it is not for greatness, not out of want

It is my basis of survival rooted in my veins

Not for applaud or choruses

But to breathe

How can I explain how poetry invigorates me

Give me rain and a poem and I will forget existence

Give me a pen and a paper and I will forget you

And if I seem too deep too much too far

Leave me be

My words will take me home.