Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Wrinting and Life. (via bookporn)obstinate-and-headstrong)
I often repeat myself,
and the second time’s a lie.
I love you.
I love you.
See what I mean, I don’t
…and I do.
And I’m not talking about a girl I might be kissing on,
I’m talking about this world I’m blissing on,
at the exact same time.
See life - doesn’t rhyme.
It’s bullets…and wind chimes.
It’s lynchings…and birthday parties.
It’s the rope that ties the noose,
and the rope that hangs the backyard swing.
It’s a boy about to take his life,
and with the knife to his wrist,
he’s thinking of only two things:
His father’s fist,
and his mother’s kiss,
and he can’t stop crying.
It’s wanting tonight to speak
the most honest poem I’ve ever spoken in my life.
Not knowing if that poem should bring you closer
to living or dying,
drowning or flying.
Because life doesn’t rhyme.
Last night, I prayed myself to sleep.
Woke this morning
to find God’s obituary scrolled in tears on my sheets.
Then walked outside to hear my neighbor,
erasing ten thousand years of hard labor,
with a single note of his violin.
And the sound of the traffic rang like a hymn,
as the holiest leaf of autumn fell from a plastic tree limb.
Beautiful - and ugly.
Like right now,
I’m needing nothing more than for you to hug me,
and if you do,
I’m gonna scream like a caged bird.
See…life doesn’t rhyme.
Sometimes love is a vulgar word.
Sometimes hate calls itself “Peace” on the nightly news.
I’ve heard saints preaching truths
that would have burned me at the stake.
I’ve heard poets telling lies that made me believe in heaven.
Sometimes I imagine Hitler, at seven years old,
a paint brush in his hand at school
thinking, “what color should I paint my soul?”
Sometimes I remember myself
with track marks on my tongue,
from shooting up convictions
that would have hung innocent men from trees.
Have you ever seen a mother falling to her knees
the day her son dies in a war she voted for?
Can you imagine how many gay teenage lives were saved
the day Matthew Shepherd died?
Could there have been anything louder
than the noise inside his father’s head
when he begged the jury,
“Please don’t take the lives of the men
who turned my son’s skull to powder.”
And I know nothing would make my family prouder
than giving up everything I believe in.
Still nothing keeps me believing
like the sound of my mother breathing.
Life doesn’t rhyme.
It’s tasting your rapist’s breath
on the neck of a woman who loves you more
than anyone has loved you before.
Then feeling holy as Jesus
beneath the hands of a one night stand
who’s calling somebody else’s name.
It’s you never feeling more greedy
than when you’re handing out dollars to the needy.
It’s my not eating meat for the last seven years,
then seeing the kindest eyes I’ve ever seen in my life
on the face of a man with a branding iron in his hand,
and a beat down baby calf wailing at his feet.
It’s choking on your beliefs.
It’s your worst sin saving your fucking life.
It’s the devil’s knife carving holes into you soul
so angels will have a place to make their way inside.
Life doesn’t rhyme
Still, life is poetry - not math.
All the world’s a stage,
but the stage is a meditation mat.
You tilt your head back,
When your heart is broken you plant seeds in the cracks
and you pray for rain,
and you teach your sons and daughters
there are sharks in the water.
But the only way to survive,
is to breathe deep,
and dive— Andrea Gibson, Dive (via life-sucksandthenyou-die)
If you have endured a great despair,
then, you did it alone;
getting a transfusion from the fire,
picking the scabs off your heart,
then wringing it out like a sock.— Anne Sexton, from Courage (via violentwavesofemotion)