At times I struggle valiantly to find
The word or phrase that I think best will scan,
Will show emotions known to every man,
Or ones that all men hope to never face.
To search a realm that none have ever trod,
Where everyone has purpose, known to God.
To seek a string that leaps with vibrant song,
And find such, out of mankinds teeming throng,
Inside the soul of some forgotten clod.
Or, by weaving words as spiders silk,
Create a shadowed corner in some forgotten space
With its own mores, its laws, its loves, its ilks.
To find the words which best describe this place
And strike the hearts of readers with their truth!
I need to tell exactly how I feel,
And fill some soul, some person with my zeal,
Emoting it in every shape and kind.
I want to lend my seeing to the blind,
My thoughts and voice to tender to the dumb,
My trust and hope to those who cannot find
These in themselves, and then act as a guide
To show them what they all posess inside,
Abilities and joy beyond their dreams,
And bring these to them with only a word.
Yet, when I try my work oft seems absurd.
I can’t unlock the demon that’s within
And set it loose to set me straight again.
And Conscience cries to me “There is no use
In trying to continue this charade.
All that you do just furthers your abuse,
You pitiful pretense, you thin facade!
How dare you speak of, in such glowing words,
What your eyes have not seen and ears have not heard?
How dare you speak of love, of hope, of joy,
That you have never felt, experience true?
You go beyond yourself, you foolish boy!”
To which I then reply “What is your base
To tell me what ideals I can’t embrace?
Though I have not experience in these,
Insight leaves them bare as winter trees
T’inspect, and find the processes which mold
all human lives, the young, the mad, the bold.
And Insight shows me how a man may feel
When he has gained a friend or lost a love,
When he has learned to hurt or learned to heal,
And what he might think of the stars above.
Insight shows the paths that each must take,
The sacrifice and choices each must make,
Unveils the threads common to every man,
Their origins, their branches, and their plan.
And though my insight is of small respect,
That little is enough to understand
The smallest part of Man’s infinite range,
And with creativeness to twist or change
The circumstances governing a man,
Or put my place in his, and circumspect
The world he inhabits, then reflect
On what I’d do if I were in his stead, his head,
Or ponder what he did or thought or said
Until I find the thread that links it all
To some universality, some call
We all feel, whether fought or taken in,
Whether it is of duty or of sin,
And transform this to words with but a pen.”
There is no knack to this, no secret rite,
It just is writing simply what seems right.
You don’t write, the thought writes you,
And not the priviledge of chosen few,
It is something anyone can do
If they have the will to understand
The threads that run through each and every man.