Echo by Woodsy the Performance Poet

John is able to elicit emotion through words more eloquently than anyone I’ve ever known. I’ve found his words sometimes haunting, sometimes consoling, hopeful, and dark. The contradiction shadowed only by the truth of it. There are moments of triumph, moments of defeat, and most importantly millions of little moments in between, that can only be captured by a true poet. Someone who feels completely, and knows that words can become a gateway to human connection.

I thought I would share here, one of his pieces, accompanied by a few of my own works, I hope you’ll consider reading some of his other beautiful poems at https://woodsydotblog.wordpress.com

I saw your face this morning –

something I needed,

outside of it all.


I reached out,

years too late to feel your skin,

and felt the echoes of your spirit.


These days,

it is the shadows

and empty spaces

that push me forward –

not quite

a ride or a dance or a dream…

just the last little ticks of nightmare…


falling away.


But here you are,

nestled in blue…


in the surf and the sky

and the morning…

and all of those things I can’t do.

 
Here you are,

filling

this crater of heartbeats

with the echo of yesterday’s screams:


“I’m getting better!”


The one damn thing you needed.

The one thing I did, too.


So did the world that forgot you were there…


showing it something,

everywhere.  


Sometimes, I’m lost here,

just like you,

slicing the world

with a hot steel blade:


“I’m getting better!”


(from this, from them, from you)


Trying

to shove a kinder,

less merciless truth

into indifferent ears:


“I’m getting better!”


(from this, from them, from stuff you say… stuff you do)


The only scream

I have left –

and sometimes,

the only scream nobody hears anymore.


A ghost scream,

throwing out my numbers and my codes,


filling

the crater of my heart

with precious bursts of echo,


like that smile:


always the gentlest

of explosions,

your smiles.


Starbursts

in the bear pit…

tiny factories of bonfire,

sat on the edge by darkness

and

blossoming

somewhere between…


I saw you sadder than before.

You saw me deeper in there too.


You hold some part of me

that’s still far better in your hands,

haunting

all those happy endings

that came scavenging

in your wake.


The truth is,

I’m more at home in darkness now,

whittling your echoes into kindling

and lighting our bonfires

with their own kind of peace…


riding out your faces and your loves


and showing the world

and the lights out of town


just what they say about me.

Reflecting on the past

While I agree that it doesn’t help to dwell on the past, I’ve found that looking through old journals really helps with developing new ideas, and understanding how you’ve felt in the past. I took the time today to go through some old notebooks and find some entries that elicited emotion. Below, I’ll share from a journal I kept through the summer of 2019, so over a year ago, in the hopes that it will give some insight into my current journey.

When will I grow up, and stop living in daydreams and idle fantasies.

Stubbornly feigning indifference, while bearing the weight of worlds.

These were placed on the inside cover of my notebook along with a poem I chose not to share. I have learned through these passages, I have come to recognize pieces of myself, pieces that I still struggle with, but in some ways have come to love. I dream. I question. I feel deeply.

Wander exceptionally far away from what you know, only there will you find yourself.

This one is still relevant to me today. All of my goals lead to a time where I am able to wander. A time, that will give me the freedom to experience, to learn, and to find myself.

Note to Self:

In order to find _______ .

Adventure is inherently important. Nothing else matters. Finding magic means taking the necessary leap.

Be free, create the world you dream of.

Make your ideal reality.

Here I am, over a year ago, searching, yet not knowing what it is I’m looking for. My mind during this time was similar to what it is now, I still yearn for a sense of freedom that I haven’t found. However, I have come to understand the importance of so many other things. I have come to understand the importance of connection, of family, and of being vulnerable enough to let people in.

Small City

Heightened awareness of status in a bourgeois sense.

Finally finished with college degrees, shopping for polos and pleated skirts.

Waiting eagerly for the chance to wear them to new jobs, holding themselves in a higher esteem than they truly should.

False confidence emitted in hazardous waves.

Unappreciated and well despised by those who walk the streets in rags, by those who have seen cruelty and misfortune in this little city.

Now, this piece holds some true anger. I remember the day I wrote this, I was at a stoplight in the city that I was working in. I was watching people walk by, holding their shopping bags from ritzy stores. At this same crosswalk I saw others walking by, dirty and tired, carrying everything they owned on their backs. It was a long day at work, and I had befriended some of the people that were carrying everything they owned on their backs. I felt for them, for their misfortune, and most of all for how misunderstood they are. I still think that everyone who has the privilege of new things, a hot meal, and a place to sleep, should take the time to get to know, and potentially help, someone less fortunate. However, I no longer feel that I can immediately condemn or judge those who do have more.

Nothing feels familiar, and everything is out of place. Lost in a cascade of emotions, never seeming to make sense. It has taken a long while to understand, and here you are, still looking at some unknown land, with a language that eludes you. It was once your vernacular, and yet, it is foreign.

This passage to me, was all of my feelings of disconnect, of uncertainty. Wondering where to turn, who would listen, who would care. This is still something I struggle with, connection for some reason feels so important, yet so scarce.

I guess this blog is an embodiment of my yearning for similarities in such a vast world. This is a place for me to be me, completely honest and open, forgetting all of the time I spent burying my thoughts. It’s also about gaining the confidence to share passages like these. I hope, if you’ve taken the time to read these, that you can gain something too.