RSS

Streams of a Great Perhaps

“Francois Rabelais. He was a poet. And his last words were ‘I go to seek a Great Perhaps.’ That’s why I’m going. So I don’t have to wait until I die to start seeking a Great Perhaps.” –John Green, Looking for Alaska

If we were a stream

Flowing down the side of a mountain

That forked before it reached the bottom,

I hope that the two rivulets would meet again on the ground below,

Perhaps at a lustrous, lucid lake.

Perhaps they cross again before becoming eternally severed,

And become one stream flowing freely,

Following the curve of the earth into the sea.

If we were a stream,

We would be made of water older

Than the Earth itself, the water brought here

Perhaps by asteroids crashing like warring gods to our planet.

Perhaps the water molecules which make up our stream

Were formed during the Big Bang, but were separated

By all the planets, galaxies, and nebulae in between them

Until finally they were brought back together on Earth.

We are rivulets; we are asteroids; we are a Great Perhaps.

Perhaps one day we will meet again as two streams become the same;

Perhaps we are the water particles traveling through space

To the terra firma, where we will reunite.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 7, 2015 in Poetry

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

What Getting Robbed on My Birthday Taught Me

Turning 18 is a milestone, and for most people, it’s the first step to slowly becoming a mature adult. For me, it was an absolute nightmare.

I moved to the beautiful city of Leiden four months ago and living here has been a wonderful experience. Attending Webster University and meeting some great friends has been amazing, and I considered Leiden to be a safe city compared to where I had applied in the U.S. I applied to schools in Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Virginia, ultimately choosing Webster based on their programs, location, and scholarship. Hearing about shootings, rapes, and assaults on American college campuses worried my family, and they were glad when I chose to stay in Europe. Not once have I heard about serious crimes in Leiden. Rotterdam or Amsterdam, of course, being larger cities, have more crime, but I perceived Leiden as a safe, small city.

On Sunday I turned 18, and I spent the previous day celebrating with my friends. We went to Den Haag for lunch, and I always grip my purse a little bit tighter there, simply because I don’t live there, therefore I keep my guard up a bit more. When my friends and I came back to Leiden that evening, we hit a few bars. Not once at any of those bars did I feel unsafe.

That changed when I was walking home with a friend around 1 or 2 in the morning. A group of 5 or 6 young men on bike began to follow us and sexually harass us. I ignored them, as I usually do when I am catcalled, but they kept trying to get a reaction from me. Finally, when my friend told them to go away, they did, but not before they stole my purse right off of my shoulder. It took me a minute to process that they had actually just stolen my purse.

We went to a nearby snack shop, and some people there called the police for us (as I had left my phone in my dorm and my friend was out of credit on hers), the police took down our names, and told us to go to the station the next day.

I called my parents the next morning, which was probably the worst part of it all. Crying on the phone, I explained to them what had happened. I said that my IDs, residence card, tablet, debit card, and Rabobank card had been stolen. That was not how I wanted to spend the morning of my 18th birthday. I wanted to feel like a responsible adult, like I could handle anything that happened, but the truth is, I couldn’t.

The next day I went to the police station and got the police report, but I know I’m not going to be getting my things back. I did learn some important lessons though:

  • Do not assume any place is 100% safe, whether you’re in a small town or a city. People can be terrible no matter where you live.
  • Do not let your guard down, especially late at night. Always be aware of your surroundings.
  • Girls especially, be sure you always have a friend or a group of friends with you when you’re walking home. If I hadn’t had my friend with me when I was robbed, I’m sure things would have been a lot worse.
  • Just bring cash and an ID when you go out to clubs/bars, and keep them zipped in your pockets. There’s no need to bring an entire purse.
  • Even if you do get robbed, remember that your belongings are replaceable. It’s a pain and it’s expensive to have to get new IDs and debit cards, and replace what was stolen, but it can be done. I am very glad that the men who took my purse didn’t physically hurt me or my friend.

It wasn’t a great start to adulthood, but life is a learning experience. I’ll definitely be more careful from now on, and I’m so thankful for my friends and family helping me out after the incident. Their love and support is much more valuable than anything that the thieves could have stolen from me.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Elysium

The distance is not simply the miles between us,

Nor the years between us,

Nor the months between the times I see you,

Rather it is an amalgamation of every separation.

But every time we are in the same vicinity,

You look into my eyes in a way that no one ever has.

Your arms pull me closer to you,

And feeling you near me is the closest to heaven

My broken soul will ever come.

You are my unobtainable nirvana,

And every day I cannot be with you, I reincarnate

Into a creature less and less likely to ever find itself

In your arms again.

Your lips are the impossible Elysium that I will only

Feel against my own again in my dreams.

That summer day I first kissed you is a sacred day

In my collection of unholy memories.

So many people have striven for immortality,

But living forever is nothing compared to a minute with you.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 10, 2014 in Poetry

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Thankful

It’s a cheesy, cliche, almost boring topic to post about today, but talking about thankfulness is definitely important. Sometimes we spend too much time focusing on what we want, when perhaps we should be appreciating what we have, especially when it’s not guaranteed that we will always have what we have right now. What I want to focus on today is how thankful I am for the people I have in my life. In most modern societies, people measure success by material wealth and how much money they make. The relationships that you build in life, however, are far more important than that. I grew up in a military family, so we moved every one or two years, which didn’t allow for too many strong relationships to be built in any place. As I got older and more adaptable, I was able to build stronger friendships, which made it even sadder when they faded away. Even if I tried keeping in touch with them, they somehow stopped being a part of my life.

I’ve lost a lot of friends because of moving, growing up, different interests, etc., but what I realized is that the ones who are truly meant to stay in my life have stayed. I have made an effort to keep them in my life, and they have made an effort to keep me in their lives. I’m so thankful to the family and friends of mine who have stayed with me, regardless of whether I live down the street from them or across an ocean. To those family and friends reading this, I hope you know that distance has never stopped me from loving you and being grateful that you’re here for me, even if you’re not physically “here.” You all mean the world to me, and I can’t wait to see you again, whenever that may be.

I hope everyone has a happy Thanksgiving! One more thing I’m thankful for is that God gave the Earth the wonderful gift of poetry… yes, I am referring to Robert Frost. Here’s his poem “My November Guest,” since I didn’t have time to write a poem myself this week, because college is hectic sometimes.

My sorrow, when she’s here with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walks the sodden pasture lane.

Her pleasure will not let me stay.
She talks and I am fain to list:
She’s glad the birds are gone away,
She’s glad her simple worsted gray
Is silver now with clinging mist.

The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.

Not yesterday I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 27, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Great White Shark

Somewhere in the ocean of my subconscious,

A great white shark swam as silently

As a child sleeping, but it smelled my flesh

And knew where to find me.

I was sitting on the horizon, on a low hill, where the sea

Swept against the edge of my dream

And brought with it the voracious shark

Whose jaws clamped onto my leg,

Though it was not as painful as one would imagine.

I screamed for help, but the bystanders simply told me

To keep quiet, for I was getting what I deserved.

They were right.

I was attacked by the monstrous amount of my secrets

That threaten to eat me alive, and I must either lose a part

Of myself to hide the secrets,

Or live with a shark clamped onto my leg to show what I have done.

I awoke from my dream, with no shark bite on my leg,

But rather a chain of secrets around my ankles

So large it would put that of Jacob Marley’s to shame.

In my waking hours, the ocean of my subconscious

Threatens to drown me, chains and all

To appease the shark that lurks in the dark,

Hungry for my guilt.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 23, 2014 in Poetry

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Wind and Window Flower

I’ve had the Robert Frost poem “Wind and Window Flower” stuck in my head lately, (I know, it’s weird to have a poem stuck in one’s head), and I decided to put my own spin on the poem. The original is actually a very lovely poem, so I urge you to read the original if you haven’t already!

Christmas poinsettia

Wind and Window Flower

I’m the window flower,

And he the winter breeze.

Sometimes I try to hear him at night

As he rustles through the trees.

I still remember when he first blew by

And tried caressing me through the glass.

My soft, crimson petals longed for his touch,

But through the window he could not pass.

I was destined to die inside that room

In my clay pot overlooking the lawn,

But how I wished to feel alive

And explore the world beyond.

That winter breeze could sweep me

Off my my roots if I had grown outside,

But alas, my dwelling was a little house

Despite how hard he tried.

In the dying firelight one evening,

I saw the winter breeze sway,

But as we were hopeless, the morning found him

A hundred miles away.

Image Source: How to care for a Christmas poinsettia. (16, April 28). Retrieved November 15, 2014, from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/gardening/gardeningadvice/7035543/How-to-care-for-a-Christmas-poinsettia.html

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on November 15, 2014 in Poetry

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Longing

I wrote this a while ago, but I just found it again and remembered that I kind of liked it… This definitely channels my inner Richard Brautigan, or at least that’s what I was going for. “I Was Trying to Describe You To Someone” by Richard Brautigan is such an interesting piece of writing; I had to try it out myself. It’s like a poem but it’s also prose, which is what I like about his style, and I find it’s actually a bit like a written down version of a spoken word poem.

When did longing start to feel so long? When did the hours since I last saw you turn into weeks? When did our last kiss finally start to fade from my lips and instead become branded onto my heart? It’s been so long it seems, yet the thought of you orbits my mind as regularly as the moon orbits Earth, and like the moon it comes in phases. Sometimes you’re a full moon, and you’re all I see all day, bright and beautiful and prominent. Other days, you occupy half my thoughts with the happy memory of us while the other half is dark, sad, and longing, and worse yet, there are those days where it is all simply dark, sad, and longing.

When did “I miss you” start to hurt so much? It’s as if “I miss you” started to mean that I was missing a part of me, like an amputee feeling phantom pains in a limb that is no longer there. The funny thing is, “I miss you” also sparks my imagination like a match sets fire to a pile of dry branches. I begin to imagine seeing you again, what it will be like when your eyes once again lock onto mine. I want them locked forever, the key thrown away off of some cliff and swept away by the river current, lost forever, and us lost forever in each other.

I imagine embracing you again, feeling your heartbeat against the curve of my breast, your heart whispering to mine. I want to feel your arms wrapped around my body like a strong brick wall around an ancient city. I want our hands to fit together perfectly once more, placing the final puzzle pieces together to create one image. This spark of imagination turns into a wildfire as I imagine kissing you, the only person whose lips ever felt right when they pressed against mine.

Another day passes without you… another night falls. Midnight approaches and I grow tired as the clock chimes twelve times as I have heard it chime every night here without you. Drifting to sleep I long for you, and I wonder if you long for me too. I cannot see you in my waking hours, so I see you in my dreams, still filled with intense longing, because longing has become so very long.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 29, 2014 in Poetry

 

Tags: , , , , ,