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Jal Bird May 2014
As we walk,
The grass bends beneath our feet,
The stars whisper secrets we do not understand,
And the wind beckons us towards something.

What is it? We don't know, but keep walking south.

South toward good days with plenty, in a pursuit of peaceful nights, with good men, and fulfilled dreams.

We walk this desert in hope of escaping this conflict we were born into,
in order to find rebirth through those coming after us and from us.

So we walk.

Walking against the grains of sand, looking for better days, with better way.

Such is the nature of our journey.

We swim in a sea of uncertainty, praying not to drown.

Capturing every moment so that it will not be forgotten, so our story can one day be told.

We appreciate cuts and bruises along our way so that even when we grow old they will tell of our journey.

I turn towards my wife who carries our unborn child, and I tell her, "We will name her 'our hope'."

And she will know how we gave up our discomfort for her sake, how her presence brought us a state of determination and stubbornness.

How she gave us hope.

When she is young she will see our well worn feet disfigured by distance and hellish conditions.

She will ask in astonishment, "What, happened?"

And we will tell her of our journey.

But she will see but not understand that we carry the weight of the past in our feet.

That our walk is still heavy and are days are always long.

Yet eventually she will see Him through our suffering, because even though our trials are not as great, our feet are like his hands and feet, they are an image of sacrifice.
Jal Bird May 2014
Brother I need you to promise me this,

Promise me that whatever the voices say, you will not take your life,

Promise me that though they tell you to leave home, you will not listen

Promise me that you won't abandon me, because I won't be able to bear it.

Do you remember when we were young?

As you would make your way around the house, pacing like your life depended on it, I don't know if you ever realized that I was your shadow, but I followed you around faithfully.

In my eyes we were the tag team duo, the nonidentical twins, the inseparable combination that was going to tackle the world together.

But now you're distant.

When I am on the ground, pinned down by the weight of reality, you don't jump in.

You asked me once, "Do you think souls can talk?"

I couldn't answer you then, but now I know.

They do talk.

You just couldn't here mine as you were walking away into the night without a single glance towards me.

The demons in the crowd are cheering, the referee is counting down, and I am losing.

The world is not bearable, not without you.

I am so afraid....

I cannot express how it feels to watch as my other half becomes more unreachable. As his reason fades, and his ability to be reasoned with following after. I can't stand to look in the mirror just to see you walking away.

But I pray that before you disappear, you might turn back and see me. You won't say anything and neither will I. But in the roar of the crowd, through the fog clouding your mind, before you leave, you will hear my soul speak.
Jal Bird May 2014
Sometimes I spread my hands to the sky certain that they can grasp the stars but they can't, yet I keep reaching anyways.

And there's something beautiful about spinning on a field when the only thing visible is the night sky, and the only thing insignificant is you.

When I was young the thought of the world revolving around the sun intrigued me, and those moments somehow made me feel at one with the world.

Spin, spin, spinning, but then I would stop and my feet could no longer keep up with pace of my head, so I’d go flying in all directions just like disillusioned men when they go stumbling down streets unfamiliar to them.

Sometimes I wonder if the world is the way it is because it is in chaos and no one even knows.

Like somehow everyone is at a disadvantage,

Like no mind is sober because of a natural disposition pinned against us by gravity.

What if that is why men do the things they do, because I always wonder under what spirit do they operate, what demons have they encountered, that cause them to be possessed with this hate that makes *** slaves of the unfortunate, orphans of the unprepared, single mothers of the lovers, victims of our children, and on and on and on and on again.

Life just keeps moving and we just keep making the same mistakes. generations pass, people die but no one understands that we are just animals, caught in a war against ourselves.

Against our greed, our pride, our lust, our security, our beliefs.

We are so full of ourselves that we don't notice what is happening around us, we don't know that the world is spinning at 1000 mph; we have lost touch with the things that matter, lost all connections with the truth in the sky that enlightens anyone who dares to approach it.

always forgetting that it is the beauty of the moon, and the millions of stars that remind us that We Are Insignificant

But instead we are grounded and we have stopped so our feet cannot keep up with the pace of our heads so we have lost our balance.

You know I'm afraid, I'm afraid for my life.

On morbid days I envision myself in my coffin, I see my lifeless body and the pastor walking up to the podium, he says,
"Jal, he was an average man, maybe a bit eccentric, tragedy struck and this young man was taken away from us way too early by the devastating actions of an unidentified person.”

I watch the whole funeral and in curiosity I wonder which belief was it that killed me, or was it something outside my control like the color of my skin.

You see most people pray to be put down while they are sleeping by the famous killer, old age, but I don't know if I'll make it that long.
I've always said I want to be fully aware of the moment I die.

That's why when I was young on family road trips, when the only thing I could see was the 350 ft. ahead of the car illuminated by the headlights, and the determined face of my father, I would fight to stay awake because I couldn't let death take me by surprise.

But now I'm eighteen I occasionally have nightmares of my loved ones dying, but then again I don't really sleep anymore because death threatens to come at any moment.

A terrorist attack could shatter the windows of this house I consider impenetrable, or even a hungry thief thinking irrationally about his rationality.

This is the world we live in.

The world is spinning off its axis and things that used to seem so far have slid closer and closer, until I’m looking right into the eyes of death.

From 9-11, to Westgate, to genocide, things are closing in on me, and the “what ifs” are no longer so improbable and I am afraid.

I'm afraid that the world will never change, that people will stay the same, that I will go insane.

I’m going insane.

Could people just understand, could we just stop for a moment, grab each other’s hands and walk to open fields together at twilight after all traces of the sun have gone, could we whirl around with our heads to the skies, our nature abandoned, and our bodies in sync with the world,

Could we just spin and spin and spin until we once again become what we were made to be.

Could we just be more than animals?
Jal Bird May 2014
You bring your head closer to my chest,
And as my heart beats against your eardrums ,
It makes a kind of music only the two of us can hear.
  May 2014 Jal Bird
Once, you told me I was your sun.
Once, we spent the sleepless nights that were stolen by our pasts borrowing time
Time to talk, time to cry, time to dream
All through the pinprick holes of a cracked screen phone that let me feel your voice and hear your heart
It was in those forums that we lay everything bare
Naked and unashamed, we approached one another in honesty and vulnerability fearing no judgement
Intertwined by the secrets that kept us together and pushed all those others away
Together we dredged through our dreams, no, not dreams, for dreams are bright and filled with joy and curiosity rather nightmares, for nightmares creep in the shadows of the night and display the worst of our subconscious  no, not nightmares, for even they evade you in the day. These were demons. Demons that did not leave you or I, Demons that followed us through the day and through the night haunting and menacing. A constant reminder of our imperfections
Yes, demons that is what they were.
Together we dredged through the demons that filled us.
And together we waged a battle.
A battle neither fearless nor brave but merely a battle to survive
And it was in those moments that You called me the sun in your darkness
But If I were your sun, the reason you breathed and lived. The source of your strength and your joy Then you were my moon
Reflecting, the strength which I bathed you in to get me through the darkest of times. To keep me resilient when my Pandora’s box dared to open dared to bring out the evils I kept so neatly tucked beneath the surface. Standing beside me when it did.
But I am not your sun
The sun does not forget to shine
The sun does not disappear or fade away
The sun is constant, day by day, always and forever.
The moon
The moon waxes and wanes.
It is half, it is whole, it is nothing
Covered in the strength of the sun, even at its strongest, it reflects a mere dim glow to that of its counterpart
So you see, you are wrong, I am not the sun, I am not your sun
You kept my darkness at bay and in your darkest night; I was but a faint globe of light
Two celestial bodies forever entangled in time and space, we are eternally connected
Yet now we find ourselves in an eclipse
With Iong shadows that have created a seemingly cavernous distance between you and I
Shadows that have left me dark and cold
For what is a life without the sun other than lifeless
  May 2014 Jal Bird
Tom Leveille
kissing you was like swerving into oncoming traffic

i can never tell if i am more haunted by empty picture frames or the ashes of their contents

you taught me that the saying "pick your battles" meant not answering when love was at the door

sometimes when i drink whiskey i swear i can hear your voice in the creases of my bedsheets & i sleep on the floor

i still catch myself running my hands over things you touched the most, looking for the echoes of your fingertips

i practice things i'll never say to you

i remember the day you told me you didn't like poetry, how "everything's already been said" & how "nothing meaningful can be captured without being cliche" you know, i don't miss you like the sun and moon, i do not miss you like tide bent waves crashing on the shoreline, i miss you like a chernobyl  swingset misses children

rumor has it that drowning is a lot like coming home, that drinking bleach can **** the butterflies in your stomach

for your love of cigarettes, i would have been an ashtray

this halloween i want to dress up as the you when you loved yourself and show up on your doorstep

i never understood what you meant when you said i was an instrument, back when you would cup your hands around my chest and breathe through the holes in my heart, i still wonder if the sounds i made remind you of wind chimes

i never paid much attention to abandoned buildings until i became one

in my dreams all the flowers smell like your perfume

i am the only person who has ever wished for the same snowflake to fall twice

if i could go back, and rewrite the definition of audacity, it would be how when we lost the bet of love, you said "we never shook on it"

i love you, if the feeling is not mutual, please pretend this was a poem

the only apology i want from you, is to have you repeat the names of children we will never have in your parents living room until they *****

we are the same person if you find yourself up at 4am dry heaving promises, or if you are kept awake by the laughter of those who've abandoned you

nobody ever told you that goodbyes taste like the back of stamps

sometimes i'm convinced that the only reason we hug, is so you can check my back for exit wounds
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