How does one live a full life surrounded by people completely satisfied with just being okay?
How does one rise above the masses of mediocracy in the pursuit of daring to think–to believe–that there’s more to this monotonous planet than meets the eye?

How can someone go back to the way she was after realizing that life is truly worth living?
And worth living for the reasons one would not expect.

Worth living for something much greater than life itself.
Something that is steadfast even when you forget and when you drift from shining island to shining island in pursuit of something deeper. Even when that something deeper has already been attained and is already yours to keep and cherish for eternity.

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As time goes on, I’m realizing more and more that the person I loathe becoming and the person I want to become are in fact, the same person.

“So much held in a heart in a lifetime. So much held in a heart in a day, an hour, a moment. We are utterly open with no one, in the end-not mother and father, not wife or husband, not lover, not child, not friend.

We open windows to each but we live alone in the house of the heart.

Perhaps we must. Perhaps we could not bear to be so naked, for fear of a constantly harrowed heart. When young we think there will come one person who will savor and sustain us always; when we are older we know this is the dream of a child, that all hearts finally are bruised and scarred, scored and torn, repaired by time and will patched by force of character, yet fragile and rickety forevermore, no matter how ferocious the defense and how many bricks you bring to the wall.

You can brick up your heart as stout and tight and hard and cold and impregnable as you possibly can and down it comes in an instant, felled by a woman’s second glance, a child’s apple breath, the shatter of glass in the road, the words I have something to tell you, a cat with a broken spine dragging itself into the forest to die, the brush of your mother’s papery ancient hand in the thicket of your hair, the memory of your father’s voice early in the morning echoing from the kitchen where he is making pancakes for his children.”

-Excerpt from “Joyas Voladores” by Brian Doyle

It is not the shouts and yells in life that stir us the most;

no, not the screams of frustration or the wails of annoyance or even the chants of protestors that gets our attention.

No.

All of the noise and the yelling just makes us prone to shut it out, to ignore the festivities and the mournings.

But it is the whispers that throw us off guard.

The silent pitter patterings of the world interest us the most.

The loudest subjects in our lives are often the murmurs and the secrets.

Forever

By Joanna Moss

A boy and a girl in the back of a car,

Riding alone together.

One loaf of bread in the back of the car,

Shared secretly together.

A boy and a girl up in a tree,

Talking alone together.

Eating up plates of hot dogs and beans,

Eaten together with joy and laughter.

A man and a woman standing at the altar,

Facing each other, alone together.

Everywhere white and decorated,

Arm in arm, hand in hand, joy and tears mingled.

A man and a woman lying on a bed,

Alone together with their most precious possession.

Tiny hands, feet, and eyes,

A little baby boy.

A grandpa and a grandma laughing,

Alone together at an Easter celebration.

Grandkids rush about, smiling and cheering,

A loving glance shared.

A grandpa standing at a grave.

Alone.

He looks with sorrow at the tombstone,

His deceased wife alone up there,

He walks home in despair.

A grandpa lying in a bed,

Alone, taking his last breath.

Taken up on his winged soul,

A grandma greets him with a smile.

At last alone together again.

Forever.