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Today I can write the saddest poem,
like a beautiful birthday cake cut into pieces
or a candle that is blown out after a wish is read
or people congratulating you
on all the achievements
that you have persisted
until now in your growing age.

Today I can write the saddest poem,
but not about my birthday,
but about the days,
about the months,
about the years,
that I've been through,
everything was happy,
yes I am very happy.
Indonesia, 18th June 2022
Arif Aditya Abyan Nugroho
Atta May 18
5 years ago I wrote a poem with the exact title
desperate and hopeless
losing myself and I really don't know who I am

Some years I tried to seek the truth
about why am I like this
what happened to me
where did it go wrong
when did it happened
and who am I?

I seek proper medication
proper healing
burned a whole money bucks
but it worth it

with hundred things to avoid
thousand things to be lessen
some prescription things to be taken

now, today, may 18th
I got to feel the most normal birthday ever
I found her, vividly I saw her
in blue, grey, red, orange, and every dawn
in every scenery
I found her, happy
but maybe still feel a little pain
but at least she could control what she couldn't before
I lover her before
and I lover her after
I love you

it ain't easy

two lessons that I got
to reach out whenever you feel sad
and to be happy in secretive

Jakarta, 18 May 2022.
thank you meee
Silver Hawk May 15
It didn't start off with a white cake
carrying forty-something candles
Rather, it was the chimes of the phone alarm
later, a cold run through the foggy streets
then back home to nurse the joint pains

The phone buzzed with messages
first from the wife, then my best friend,
then my brother, to whom I got to respond
"and the same to you too"
then my ghost friend, who only sends a message
on this day, each year
before vanishing out of my life

I'm home today, having a party of sorts
with the twin monitors
and the tailless mouse
At least they look dressed up for the occasion
sitting on the workstation
in their black soft-plastic jackets
They don't dance or sing or even mumble anything
They only look down at my fingers
going back and forth
around the letters of the alphabet
as I go to work while sitting at home

At this age, I muse to myself
some people don't want to remember
how they have moved closer
in the journey towards
forgetting one's name, family
and eventually how to eat

And almost imperceptibly
we have become the dad, or mum
or auntie that we looked up to
or held under the magnifying glass
and judged for their decisions on our lives

But now I'm only trying
to live in the moment
as I pour a bit of whiskey
swirl it around gently in the glass,
watching if it shows
within its brown circular current
the regrets of the past
or the shrouded future
and hopefully, the number of my age
one example of how birthdays go after one reaches a certain age.
In the troposphere of your life are the ready clouds to precipitate
The clouds which are for days condensed of your acts
The acts of your kindness, selflessness, dedication and the lot given into other lives
And on the day of memory - a day worth celebrating
Let our wishes be the steams that melts those beautiful clouds
Let the rain soak your soul wet with joy
A joy that really make the day special
Special enough to preserve you even as you are to us forever.
In honour of kind brother in Christ  - Emmanuel Konlan ( on his birthday ).
Brent Apr 14
Whenever we see stray cats
Whenever you see a funny tiktok
Whenever you try to scratch your ears
Whenever we talk about these little things

All your stories of your daily routines and work
All of our shared rants and dreams
All of our big deals, and little things
Are the things I love about you
Happy birthday my bebu
My Dear Poet Apr 12
Today is my birthday
reluctant to turn the calendar
I lingered here a little longer
the same age I was yesterday
I remained today
Til the wind blew the page
and turned to that age
that I am to be
So, unashamed and bold
I accepted my fate
and fighting my fears
I got old, a day late
Tempests may surround
in the worst of times
a storm to level ships
capsize friend and foe alike
waves that change not just lives
but memory
how tragedy frames our desires
as need, rather than options
as love, rather than responsibility
how the quilt of phoenix feathers
that we oft cover us for slumber
molts as we shed our tears
molts as we age through life
and though times do change
and shadows creep beneath the door frame
still we hear the voice whisper,

"The winds of victory are soon to come."

Memories are trinkets we trade for action
we trade for purpose
we trade for comfort
Efforts spent crafting the perfect memories
catch up to our imaginations over time
Snapshots we thought were sublime
Calamities we shut the door upon
In the kaleidoscope of reality
we can see their colors change
what was treasured becomes tattered with use
what was feared becomes power over abuse
As we build our lives from ashes
no longer need for phoenix feathers
as we shatter walls of illusion
fact from fiction
truth from delusion
we come to hear the voice command,

"The winds of victory are soon to come."

And there is a tumult in the cupboards
under the floorboards
in the rafters
an aching shout of protest
a rapping upon the windows of the soul
a look, in the eyes, of horror
a clinging on to the raft of hope
a desperate jump to the cliff of salvation
a plunging fall into starvation
a rushing flight into the arms of the past
a stepping back from its cold clutches
a fervent climbing of the mast
looking out to the distant horizon
seeing how light is carved from darkness
knowing how you were made this way
and that your limitations
are at the mercy of your love
walking forward, proudly saying,

"The winds of victory are here at last!"

And how the winds whirl about you
as you dance in the curls and twists
walking upon the waves of anguish
waves of guilt, love, and praise,
to know they all complete you
and that the storm is who you are
you build the foundations
that will prepare you
for becoming
a guiding star
that leads your loved ones to the noble place
where your dreams would lead you thus far
a place of healing
a place of trust
a place we all know is here
To my friend, Amanda, on her birthday.
May this and every day be one of joy or little victories amidst the struggle of life.
Keep fighting your battles with your heart to guide your journey and your mind to light the way.

Much love,

CJ Mar 31
Birthday candle is blown
Surrounded with love
from people I’ve always known
But to satiate the need
to feel cherished—
—is a call or a text message
to make his love-binding spell
Oh, how nice would that be
But he doesn’t think of me
And that is reality

fika Mar 12

Elderberry drinks

Soft footsteps
Emerald green rug

Roasted garlic caramelized
Subtle and buttery
Once pungent and sharp

Flowers as centerpieces
Tulips emblematic of spring

Yet. I’m stuck sipping
On this drink
Thinking of you

And the joints of the floorboards
Rubbing together

E Mar 12
ten minutes.
sitting with presley
tearing up
not happy
but not in despair
two cold bodies
giving one another
what they need
one shivering
one perpetually alone
three minutes.
i am far
but on the way
thoughts being guides
two minutes.
time is gone
one minute.
i'm more of an adult
California world
Weightless part 5 and 6
Cry alone
Thank you for being those songs that take me into my 19th birthday.

- - - - - -

i feel thankful
in the midst of feeling frustration, anger, and depression

i think two things can exist at the same time, even if they're at odds
maybe that's the neutrality i've started to embellish

it is a weird feeling
being alive at ages over 18
i had little faith i would be alive right now
but i am
and there's pain
but there is also
an appreciation and an adventure

what i didn't think i could've had
is tangible and i'm existing
i am alive
and i didn't **** myself.
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