Category Archives: self-exploration

Self-Help Junkie

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I ordered more self-help books today…
they’ve been my drug of choice
since June.
I keep believing
someone else has found
the clear path to my healing.
I’m searching
for the recipe
the strategy
the tip
the trick
the magical incantation
the mantra
the meditation
the process
the 40 day workbook
the online program
the teacher, speaker, or coach
to help me feel ok
about my life,  my self.
The hungry ghost looms large;
its insatiable appetite aches loudly.
I am overcome by everything.
I start to believe
that some mistake was made
when I came to Earth,
because clearly
I wasn’t meant for this world.
I pick up another self-help book.
Oh, someone else feels this way too?
I find some hope, some solace,
one moment of respite.
There are worse addictions.

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Let Myself Go

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I curl inside myself
even tighter
than I ever have before.
It is dark, uncomfortable,
lonely,
far away from everyone.
It should feel safe
but it doesn’t.
This isn’t a fearless navigation
of unknown territory…
it’s staying stuck in one place,
terrified, confused.
I can’t remember
why I’m so scared
or what got me here
in the first place.
I’d like to get out
if only I’d let myself go.

To Be Good

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In an effort to cope
with the overwhelming change
I dropped into a cycle
of self-improvement.
Working on myself
is something I can control.
If bad things are happening,
it’s because of my mindset,
my perspective needs tweaking,
obviously I haven’t done the right work
or enough of it
for it to count.
There comes a point
when all this work becomes exhausting,
pointless, fruitless, a waste of time.
Then the work becomes trusting,
surrendering, letting go,
opening up to what is,
being right here,
breathing.
Let me set down this burden
of always trying to be better.
Let me breathe
and love this little creature
that lives within me,
this self that tries so hard to be good.

Never Before

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The Piano at 2:25 and at 3:00…

I’m standing at the edge
of my consciousness
delicately balanced,
peering over into the great abyss of space,
not sure whether I should be
scared as hell or ecstatic.
I can’t believe I’m here
and how lonely and excited I feel
all at once.

I shout out into the void
Why is there no map?
A voice answers
Because no one else has ever been here
before.

 

Deeper Initiation

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The world is closing in
and my feelings overwhelm me;
there is no escape.
Wisdom speaks.
It says:
When it appears
that there is no direction to turn,
it is time to turn within.
Can I tease apart
the many layers of my grief?
Can I find the slivers of light
that make their way in
when I reach for the spaces
between the darkest thoughts?
I never knew it would be this hard.
I wonder who’ll I be
on the other end.
Someone suggested
that this is an initiation of sorts.
Initiation into what?
I know sadness, loneliness,
depression and grief too well.
Is this a deeper initiation,
a chance to crack the code
of existence itself?

Nothing New

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Sitting in a bar in Baltimore
waiting for the musicians to play
wondering if there are any new thoughts
a human mind could think—
or are all thoughts just iterations
of the same thoughts
humans have been thinking
for millennia?
I decide to embrace the awkwardness
of nothing new.
I decide I don’t need
to be spectacular.
Wow, the pressure is off.
That feels pretty good.