Saturday, February 18, 2017

Poetry and A Call to Action

Hello Friends,

I write poetry. When I wrote my creative thesis for my Master's degree it was a cathartic experience. I loved to feel and think deeply and write purposefully. I will periodically share some of my poetry with you which is a vulnerable thing to do when I pour my heart into every single word. 

By the way, I know some people get intimidated by poetry and feel like they are not "getting it," but the beautiful thing is that poetry can mean different things for each person, especially when you are not reading it for an English class. ;) The best way to read poetry is to read it three times. The first time read it purely for the sound and rhythm; don't try to "get it" the first time. Try to hear the song in the words. The second time you read it pay attention to the images and feelings. The third time try to connect meaning between the words, images and you. 

There are a few poems that felt like they came easily to me, while others took many months. The poem below came to me quickly and went through many drafts. I wrote this poem as I thought about my anxiety and fear about fulfilling my dreams. 

“I do not have superior intelligence or faultless looks. I do not captivate a room or run a mile under six minutes. I only succeed because I was still working after everyone else went to sleep." -Greg Evans 

I believe that the difference between me and the person I want to be is lots of courage, faith and work.

Please read the poem and then think about the question I pose afterwards.

Near Dawn

Near dawn the sun touches the branches of pines.
Dark flees from the light and shadows turn bright.
The mossy rocks slip into clear small brooklets.
The sun bids you to do as you will.
You may jump from tree to tree
You may run with the antelope and sleep with the bears.
But you sit scared, head engulfed in your arms and knees.

Retreat these woods if the taste of foreign fruit makes one’s lips tremble with pleasure and pain
Run to the valley with towering castles
Ask for their mercy and take up their arms
For the standard of Self is too heavy to bear
when a world full of maybes sits stirring in pots
bubbling and brewing and making a spot
on a new clean white shirt made for staying not straying.

In rank, in your new heavy armor,
you watch the freedom flight of birds in the distance.
You see the tips of the trees past the rock walls.
You imagine the warmth of a bear and your legs ache for the antelope.

Are you marching in line or are you running? Do you relate to the dawn or the walls?

I am ready to slough off all the world's expectations and live with freedom, being my best self and serving others best. God has a mission for me and I want to fulfill my potential. I want to live out my mission with faith, dedication and optimism. I know that everyone's mission is different, but I hope that as you fulfill your part, you enjoy the freedom and joy that comes from living authentically.

Lucy Jo

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