I have never published any poem I’ve written. Perhaps its because I haven’t written many poems or perhaps it stems from a fear of opening up, being vulnerable, and being new at something. I suspect its largely the latter. To that point, it only seems appropriate to share with you a poem I wrote that directly deals with my difficulty to open up. This poem, titled “Love Me,” is a plea for love. It is less of a petition for love as much as it is a confession.
With the crashing wave of Jenga blocks and Connect 4 hop scotch, love me . With the hopeless optimism attached to balled up paper hurled towards trash cans as Kobe is shouted from afar, love me. With the frustration and impatience of a child learning to read as they stubbornly refuse to turn the page until they’ve read it correctly, love me . With the apprehensive support of air mattresses and their skeptical yet persistent ability to keep us afloat, love me . With the nagging clicks of mice and noisy keyboards of computer labs which vanish with time, love me . With the kind of fabricated confusion people use to mask their guilty pleasures or at least make them subject to laugh at and feel a little less guilty about like how I don’t understand the airhorns before some rap songs but dammit I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love them—so love me like this.
Like the river and how it unapologetically pushes the bed of rocks along with it. Love me recklessly like demolition teams that younger siblings turn out to be. Love me careless like the moon and how it has no concern for the tides. Love me like you’ve just bought a brand new bath mat and you keep finding yourself aimlessly wandering into the bathroom just so you can feel it again. Love me like the pot hole you’ve ran over far too many times and you’ve just discovered that an easy way to get the city to fill it in is by spray painting a giant penis around it, and you’ve never been more excited about defacing public property in your life. Love me ferociously. Love me like you just stepped on a lego. Love me the way that people still use Comic Sans. Love me with the disappointment which comes from pouring a bowl of cereal only to discover the milk carton is basically empty—a frustrating reminder that you need to go to the grocery store. Love me like you live in the south and still refer to water fountains as bubblers.
Love me, and love me slowly.Pull me off the shelf, open me upand like the old book that I amshake me of my dust.Take your timeturning the pages,and show mewhat it meansto feel.
Being honest with yourself is scary. I’ve always struggled with having a very limited emotional palette and it has taken a toll on the relationships in my life. In failing to feel sad, to feel angry, to feel frustrated, to feel jealous or to feel cautious, I’ve failed to make genuine connections with the people in my life. I’ve struggled with this throughout my entire life, and only now, at the age of 23, do I find that I’m starting to become a more emotional man. It was only through the process of opening up to myself and the physical act of writing down that which I’ve wrestled with in my mind that I’ve began to change.
Over the years, I’ve discovered poetry to play an integral part in better understanding myself and my passions. When you stripe poetry of its medium, structure or presentation, you’re left with the subconscious. Poetry, being largely non-visual, forces you to process your thoughts through a deeper connection with your psyche.
If you’re looking to change, learn about or better understand something, write about it. Whether you’re looking to financially get yourself on track, become healthier, have an idea for a project or are having difficulty understanding a complex subject, write about it. You don’t have to write a poem, but I’ll challenge you to do so because it’ll force you to process your thoughts differently. Your thoughts carry weight and the only way to relieve your burdened mind is to write them down.