Steps of the way

The fragile lattice of the steps to the present
A long-reaching pattern whose each piece was meant
What would have happened from a fault in the web?
What would that matter to the flow and the ebb?
A thousand new branches open up every day,
A thousand new choices that determine the way,
An impossible design of possible futures
A game to which we fancy ourselves rulers
Even with only seeing three paces ahead.
Abysmal possibilities that may fill with dread,
How do we control a world ruled by chance,
How do we plan the retreats and advance?
Unless, of course, what’s meant to be will
Despite the bends, mazes, struggles uphill.
Should it be shameful we cling to this hope,
Absurd predestinations to help us to cope
With staring down an abyss that gently looks back
While we lack the language to answer its black?
Is this to be the extent of our free will,
Choosing the route, but converging paths still?
Is this why the journey is the one that should matter,
If it’s only it that can end worse or better?
Or maybe, somehow, it comes back to skills,
More knowledge unlocking more possible thrills,
And only the wise may find out the secrets,
The rest of us herded off among senseless spirits.
I can’t figure out the intricate patterns,
But maybe, one day, I’ll understand what matters.

Later

Every day, we schedule opportunities.
Not in the sense that we plan for them,
But that they knock on our door and we answer,
Tell them to have a seat, open our notebooks,
And schedule them to come back later –
A day, a week, an year from now.
We want to do great things, beautiful things,
But we need to be more knowledgeable first,
We need some time to gather our courage,
We need to find that perfect moment.
So we plan all those wonderful things for later.
We forget that we only have ‘later’ on lease,
And the terms are vague, the owner old and fickle,
His scythe too often cutting it shorter,
Making it more expensive than expected.
I don’t want to spend a lifetime
Worrying about how long I’ll afford the rent,
Wasting my time begging for a little more of it.
Maybe I’ll try a new idea for once,
And use it as I get it instead,
Throw out the notebook and open the door.
I think I’ll start, and gather the knowledge
By screwing things up and fixing them as I go,
I think I’ll run, and hope that courage
Will gather itself and run to catch up with me,
I think I’ll do, and accept that perfect
Is sometimes more about quantity than quality,
More about the fact that I did something,
Rather than if I did it exactly like planned.
I’m poor, and renting out that ‘later’ isn’t cheap.
So I’ll spend all I have on buying some happiness,
And learn, instead of ‘later’, how to use my ‘now’.

Imagine

I saw a little boy building today,
Towers in spiralling, beautiful forms,
And rejoiced at the sneak-peek
Of tomorrow’s elegant skyline.
I saw a little girl painting today,
A world covered in flowers and sun,
And rejoiced at the assurance that
The towers will be dressed in gardens.
We know that it’s the silliest thing
To tell children that their worlds
Do not respect the rules of ours.
They will draw outside the lines,
And we let them do it in peace.
It’s a shame we forget, however,
To cut ourselves the same slack
And find forms that match our lines
Instead of cramming our colours
Within the stiff pre-existing shapes.
The world would be a better place
If we all closed our eyes to it,
And let ourselves imagine it anew.
If we imagined so hard we truly believed
That buildings are meant to be spirals
And curtains of flowers should adorn them.
We should believe in things that aren’t true
Or else how could they ever become?
Imagining other worlds is easy
The trick is to look at this world,
See it, feel it, understand it,
And imagine it as other, as better,
And all the ways to bring it there.

Gold veins

Everyone cracks into pieces sometimes –
It’s no wonder I became chipped too
But don’t expect me to hide my damage,
Ashamed and fearful of my past.
The events that shape who I am
Deserve more respect than to be ignored,
Shoved under the mat, erased, denied.
If you want you can see only the defect,
But I see the things I survived,
The things that made me stronger.
So I won’t hide my chips and cracks,
But bind them in shining gold,
Hoping, not dreading to catch your eye,
And show off my beautiful scars.
Maybe I look more fragmented now,
But I know the joints are actually
The places that will hold firmer
The next time I start to crack.
So I’m not afraid of breaking.
If anything, I’m looking forward to
The moment when I’m a crazy mingle
Of veins of cooper and silver and gold,
A work of art in tears and laughter,
The original porcelain in tiny bits,
Fragments within their mount of metal,
Each line a survival lesson in wisdom,
Turning pure china into precious stone.

Cast the dice

Tell me all about
Your carefully laid-out plans
And all your contingencies,
Your armies of lists
And swarms of possibilities.
I promise I’ll listen,
But don’t demand I don’t laugh
When Heaven itself chuckles –
There’s no amount of preparation
That can turn the tide of fate.
I’m not saying don’t think ahead
And charge into life like a fool –
Your fire may keep you warm
But it won’t protect
Your bare, shivering skin
From thorns and cuts and bruises.
There’s a difference, though,
Between being aware of dangers
And making up some of your own.
Look before you leap,
But not to the bottom of the sea
Just take a deep breath
And trust yourself to deal.
You can’t survive a war if
Your overthinking kills your spirit
Long before the battlefield.
So cast the dice already
And let it be.

Dream

I loved the world to die in flames;
I loved it, without face or names.
Its eyes of darkness cast on me,
I loved them, for they couldn’t see.

I loved the roses that were dying,
I loved the children that were crying.
Each and every drop of tear,
I loved it, for it wasn’t clear.

Why do we love all that is broken?
Why do we love what can’t be woken?
It is just a dream of ours,
That we’ll be buried with those flowers.

Objective Count

You hold ends and beginnings
In the depths of your eyes,
A confusion of joy and sorrow
Driven by madness maybe,
Because I feel like I’m drunk
Whenever I hold your gaze.
You set me adrift, and half the time
I’m not sure if you’re
The best or the worst thing
That could have happened to me.
I just wish I could make a count
Of how many ends
To how many beginnings
And have an objective measure
To set my subjective giddiness against,
But it’s a complicated math
That can’t decide between
Adding and multiplying,
Addition and substraction,
A zero, a one and a multitude.
You started with an end.
And that’s a bad sign, isn’t it?
Because your presence slowly
Disolved my whole life before you.
But I’m not sure if that’s only an end.
The end itself had a beginning
And that beginning was, in fact,
That you made me realize
There are other things out there
And that I might deserve them.
But then, I perhaps only tried to go
For the one possible (or impossible) thing
That had your unreadable eyes,
And your quick, delicious smile –
I have no idea how my new life
Began rearranging itself in this
Beautiful shape that
Sharpens all my corners
And hugs all my curves
Like it was custom-made for me.
Does it matter that I only ever
Held your eyes and followed you
Like you were the Pied Piper
And I was starving for your song?
Does it matter that I stumbled
Upon the right path by mistake?
Is intention relevant to mathematics?
Do two small slices of something
Hold the same equality to a bigger one
When they were intentionally cut
And when they crumbled away?
I can’t even really disregard all this
And look towards the future.
It would be romantic, wouldn’t it,
To say I only need the very last thing
To not be an end, to not be our end.
But how foolish would that be?
Because, yes, you’re powerful enough
To leave me splintered and bleeding
Not from my heart, but my soul
When you’re finally done with me.
But something tells me that
You’re also incredible enough
That when I crawl my way up
And bind my wounds and cracks –
Because I always do at some point –
I’ll find that the pieces you left behind
Make up far more of me than I was
Before I ever met you.
And maybe, just maybe,
Some of those parts would
Never have happened
If it wasn’t for you.
So maybe I’m trying to count
Apples together with pears
So that it might tell me
How many plums I’m missing.
Maybe no count is possible of life.
But I’m scared to be left without
Any objective measure at all,
Because everything in my eyes
Is distorted, painted rose and gold.
I am drunk and high on you,
And it’s getting harder to remember
That I want to be objective.

Tell Me What Was

Tell me what it was
So I can tell you what will be.
Time is a wrapped kind of mirror,
A spiral dressed up as a straight line.
I know you try to walk forward
But history always repeats itself
So at least remember the minefields
And step just slightly off next time.
It’s a day paused on repeat
But you get to make different choices
So choose to explore the new,
The things you were afraid of
The first time you came round –
If you’ll crash and burn anyway
At least make a bet with yourself
How long you’ll last this time.
Being the same isn’t a sin,
As long as you do something different,
The same way doing the same isn’t
If you’re a different person this time.
Just make sure to break the mould
With even the slightest fracture
To set the water flowing through cracks.
A mere trickle is enough for now
You have your whole life to build it up
Just make sure by the time you’re done
You’re a whole ocean of streams,
Wide and vast enough that
It won’t matter that every direction
Looks like the exact mirror of others
If you have an ocean’s depth beneath.
Let others worry about surface
And work at the important dimension.
Time is a wrapped kind of mirror –
You can look at what was
And glimpse what will be
But not everybody realizes
That the pair of eyes
Each side of the glass
Need to be different kinds
To tell backward from forward
And face the right way to see.

Change

I am the girl that you’ve known your whole life,
That you can predict everything about,
Whose every thought you know like your own.
You turn away, for a month, a week, a second,
And you find something else in my stead,
That speaks new words with an old mouth
And argues new thoughts with old ideas.
It’s startling – I’m startling. But I’m familiar too
So you get used to it. Until you turn away again
And everything comes apart again and
Gets put together just slightly differently.

You wonder why. Why do I make the transition
When I’ve already arranged my fragments so neatly.
But I am that person that has everything figured out
Just so she has something to destroy
And make something new out of the pieces.

I am that variable that’s labelled undefined,
Though undefinable would be more exact.
I’m a character and a number,
And my personal favourite,
I’m true. Or false. Or both at once.
Just so I become something else after.

I am everything and nothing –
Though I sometimes have problems
With the states in-between.

I am that person that you envy
And that person that you pity
And sometimes I’m not a person at all,
Just a state of flow, restless energy.

Change terrifies me. It feezes me,
And makes me want to run away.
And in the midst of the terror,
It exhilerates me. The possibilities.
Maybe that’s why I dive in head first,
Breathe it in until my veins burst with it,
Until I can’t remember where I started
And who I am. What I am.
Until I do remember.
I am change.

Crossroads to future

A road that winds under my feet,
A path that’s never been just neat,
A crossroads, straing in my face,
Beautiful death, in silver, lace.

My eyes gave nowhere to turn;
I search a land that smokes and burn.
It’s past – still fiery and bright,
Its colours shutting down the light.
It’s made only of rocks and bricks.
It’s not a dream. Not made of tricks.

The other frame is feather-light,
Shimmering mist that comes in sight.
My breath does show swirling in dreams.
My deed, so soft, can change what seems.

Forgive me, past! And let it slip.
I wish not for your wisest deep.
I wish for future’s shining gold,
Future for which my soul I sold.
So let me pass along the road.
I’m leaving you – so nice. But cold.