there’s just about nothing
about nothing, just about
or the uncompromising pull
of needing this to be anything
but nothing, everything but
I’ll take a walk instead
backwards, not to trip on
your shoelaces. They’re always
I’ll be moving too quickly away
to help you fasten loose ends.
The way the breeze makes the willow dance fills me with a kind of peace I wish I could bottle up for a time I know I’ll need it – when the chaos consumes me and I can’t escape the panic. I don’t know how to hold onto these moments. Perhaps they are not meant to be captured or controlled; the beauty lingering no matter how evanescent.
Somewhere along my journey I misplaced my movement. It left me for a little while, went dormant because I stopped feeding it. I forgot how to care for it, that it needed to be nurtured. That was my fault. Nevertheless it came back to me, waking slowly the more that I took the time to sit down with it and ask what it desired. Are you ready to come out now? Do you have what it is you once thrived on? Can you forgive me for allowing you to drift so far away?
I am discovering that despite how much I have changed, the things that once moved me remain recognizable. There’s an uncomfortable adjustment to getting acquainted with yourself. I am reminded of the depth in which I love and feel affected by temporary happiness. I had forgotten how easily I get consumed by the euphoria, mania, fast climb to the top of paradise. I had forgotten this because each time I am met with the fall, spiraling to the bottom of a high, I go looking for it in other things, other people. In myself – in my movement. And so comes the necessity to seek balance – the tightrope widens to make room for exploration. Somewhere new, something unknown, someone magnificent.
In a time when I became settled; unaffected and unintended – my movement slept. I became even. No highs, no lows, no need to find balance or walk a fine line of uncertainty. Without the drive to venture into unchartered lands or weigh out emotions, my world flattened. One note. One tone. Even.
As my movement surfaces, I become aware of the things I know for certain; I want to always climb up, walk across, dive to the bottom and look for doors to new places. To be moved, to be fleeting, to be like a willow dancing in the breeze.
Pain is universal, while also being so unique to a given cause. Emotional, mental, or physical. The pain we ourselves feel or the pain we feel for someone else. Being hit in the face or being told unkind words. Being betrayed or lied to, let down or disappointed. Our bodies bruise. Our hearts bruise. Our ego and our pride bruise. We try like hell to avoid it, yet are followed around all our lives by its unwanted shadow.
Some say the more often we feel it, the stronger we become. For most, pain is poison. It can weaken the soul if we let it, devour every muscle and bone, every fiber of our being until it consumes us. We can learn from pain, to never place our hand in the fire twice. But we are often foolish, either forgetting the sensation or attempting to feel the flame in a different way; always yielding the same result, always burning.
Pain evolves. It assumes a different form if you hold onto it for too long, taking on new shapes and tastes of constant acidic bitterness. Pain feeds on pain. It thrives on our need to cling to our daemons and dwell on our pasts. We carry our pain, lock it up in suitcases or wear it like a jacket. We might hide it under the bed or hang it up in the back of the closet, but whenever the time comes to move, be it onward or forward, we make sure to take it with us. It belongs to us. It becomes us. Taking up too much space to allow anything else in, it can become all we make room for.
The weight of our pain only gets heavier and harder to carry with time. We can choose to travel light. Rather than tucking our pain away, or giving it to others to deal with, we can unpack it. Take a good look at it and decide to take the lighter jacket instead. Leaving the pain behind, we just might find there is plenty more to keep us warm.