A Well-Traveled Poem: Love's Eternal Fight

Love's Eternal Fight by Caitlin Breanne from Vienna, Austria 

For the one who will join me in love's eternal fight....

I await his coming with complete excitement; absolute eager anticipation. I've been waiting a long time, preparing. I lived in darkness, but I've found my way out now. I'm ready. I'm waiting.

He comes. Like a sunrise, he arrives on my horizon. He's beautiful, and I run to him. We embrace and his arms are strong. He can hold me all day, and I can stay there in his safety. We reside in our embrace. There is wholeness and peace. There is love. My past cannot follow me here. I don't even look back.

We inhabit our love, and our love inhabits us. We abide. We are slave to nothing but our professed infatuation. The desire to exist within our gaze takes precedence over all else. Time may pass but it goes unnoticed. The unspoken words fill my ears. He is stunning.

A moment passes and suddenly there is fear. In me. I'm overtaken. I shut down, preparing for the fall. I call a truce with my own heart in hopes of repreive from the fear that paralyzes me. I don't know how to stop this.

He says, "Be you," and I hear him. I throw a wrench in my gears. I break the pattern. I won't do what I've done before; retreating to the safety of darkened corners. I'm better now, that girl does not live here anymore. I confess my fears and I share my dirty insides. And he doesn't flinch. So I fall, but not in the way I thought I would.

It's happened. We've committed the ultimate act of treason against ourselves. We've damned ourselves to a fate worse than death. We've fallen in love, and in doing so condemned ourselves to live perpetually in a state of hopeless suffering and joy. We'll trade our own breath for just a glimpse into the heart of the other. We'd forsake our own comforts and sanity for the chance to hear their name, see their face, hear their voice. We will sit silently through the agonizing constant thought of each other. There's no turning back now. The damage is done and we're fringed. We've seen the beauty in one another - and the flaws - and deemed them worthy. Each believes the other is a virtuable opponent and teammate for the game.

We've agreed to play with, for, and against one another in the hopes of playing life's greatest never-ending game. We'll dress in our battle gear; lacing up one another's shin guards and handing each other our shields while the other hand reaches for the sheathed weapon at our hip. We'll kiss before the beginning bell, and clang our swords together with a furious passion in our eyes and smiles, and fight to the death for love.

The beauty in it shines so brightly that the darkness of my forgotten past has nowhere to hide. All is alit with the the fire of intrigue and desire. There is nothing but light and grace. We circle each other and laugh heartily as we make our piercing jabs. Every clang of our swords produces a spark, further raising our excitement and anticipation of the next move.

Metal meets metal creating a ferocious flash and the tiniest corner smolders a charcoal hue. My gaze breaks for the smallest of moments and I see a rising smoke form a bidding hand. Our swords clash heavily. His eyes are completely ignited. I'm distracted and turn, looking over my shoulder. The hand beckons. My eyes return to my love and he says, "Stay. Fight me! Look here, in my eyes."

I let my sword fall. He must fight, so he swings and I throw up my shield. The impact jarrs my body and I cower, frantically searching for the hand. It's whispering now, "Come."

"NO!" He yells to me. "Don't listen! Pick up your sword and FIGHT ME." I'm frozen.

I look down and I'm naked under my armor. I cover myself with my shield. He throws down his shield and unlaces his guards. He's breathless, voice hoarse. "Stand UP. You have to stand. Take my hand." I reach for his hand, but he'll see my nakedness. "You're beautiful," he whispers. I stand.

"The darkness is beautiful, too," I say. "Not like this is," he returns. He takes my other hand, so we stand squarely face to face. His face is soft and he's breathing heavily. There's dirt on his body. He wears the marks of battle well. He's fought so much in one day.

If I go now, he can rest, I think. He's so beautiful. I don't want to leave. He's tired, I see that. I let go of his hands and he panics. "No, don't do this. You can stay. We don't have to fight anymore today. We can fight tomorrow." I hesitate. His eyes are captivating.

They're the color of charcoal.

I move away. I look for the smoke in the corner. "I'm sorry." I can't look at him as I walk away. He doesn't move.

The hand's command over me grows with every step I take away from him and nearer to the darkness. He's fading behind the ash and smolder. I can barely make out the outline of his body. The light is gone now. I'm alone. It's dark.

I'm scared, but at least I'm scared alone. I know this fear already; there's comfort in it. The familiarity of the darkness is terrifying but I find my solace. The silence is like thunder without the strike of lightening. I close my eyes. My past found its way back to me. I breathe, but it's just the motions. I don't want the air. Time passes, and I feel every second.

I open my eyes. It's dark and they take time to adjust. I don't like it here. It's too dark. I rub my eyes. Still nothing.

I cry out, "Hello? Is anyone there?"

A rustle.

"Hello? I can't see you."

A hand.

"Please, I can't see. I'm scared."

We walk.

I can't see where I'm putting my feet. "I'll fall," I say.

We walk.

"Where are we going?" I'm becoming desperate.

We walk. We walk for forever. I close my eyes so I can feel more, hear more. I feel the dirt shift under my feet with each step. My feet are steadier when my eyes are closed and I'm focused. I feel the hand guiding me. It's strong, and calloused from battle.

We walk.

"Who are you?" I ask.

I hear his steps. I feel his weight and his strength go before me.

"I am the darkness."

Our pace quickens.

"Why did you take me?" I ask.

"You came to me. You left your fight."
"I had to." I say weakly. "I wasn't strong enough."

He stops at my words. He yells, "You gave up!"

"I didn't know what to do. I didn't know how to fight."

"He fought for you."
We walk in silence.

"I love him."

His voice was calm and soft, "Then why did you leave?"

"You called me."

"You looked for me."

We walk.

I feel light behind my eyelids, and our pace slows.

We stop.

He lets my hand go, and I open my eyes. It's bright and I blink.

He's standing before me. His charcoal eyes are bright and clear.

Our swords and shields lie near us. I look at them, and I look at him. He's so beautiful.

"You found me in the darkness and you saved me."

"No, I became the darkness and became your solace."

I run to take up my shield.

"We don't need those anymore."

"Why? I want to fight. I'll stay. I'm not afraid anymore."

"Take my hand," he says.

So I do. And we walk.

We walk through darkness and light. We walk through desert and storm. We walk through feast and famine. We walk together.

And we walk forever. 

A Well-Traveled Poem: "Still Foolishly" and "My Fix"

The following poems were written by Kendell Clark from Frederick, OK... 

"Still Foolishly"

And like a fool, I sat and watched him walk away; telling myself he would be back to stay.

I thought 'I can wait until he came back again'; and still foolishly, I wait day out and day in.

And like a fool, I yearned to change every wrong circumstance; yearning to be given another chance.

I think to myself, I must be insane; and still foolishly, my signature bears his last name.

But like a fool, I will always cherish the silent memories. He took hope, but the past cannot be taken from me. 


 "My Fix"

Barely making it through today, dreading the thought of tomorrow.

Fighting among the demons, drowning in my sorrow.

The settling of my mind, helping to go and setting me free.

Not knowing how to swallow hurt and face reality.

Everything turning this fragile life into a catastrophe.

Longing for better days

To turn family's shame into praise

But once again, taken over by the fix.

Like an endless and unavoidable itch.

A Well-Traveled Poem: Value of an Education

The following poem was written by my Great Great Grandmother... 

We must love learning if we would possess it.

It belongs to education to determine when to act, and when to cease; when to reveal, and when to conceal; when to speak, and when to keep silence; when to give, and when to receive. Education regulates the measure of all things and provides the means of finding the end in every course of life.

In order for us to love learning, we must feel its delights; we must apply to it, however irksome at first, closely and constantly for a time. By so doing, we form habits that are not only pleasant but they are necessary to refine and polite manners.

By being educated we adorn our minds with a store of useful knowledge, improve our conducts, and honor and success in life is sure to be more apt to attend us. If we would possess an education, we must expect to study very hard. The Creator has so constituted the human intellect that it can only grow by its own action; and by its own action and free will, it will certainly grow.

We must therefore, educate ourselves. We may have books and teachers to help us, the work is ours. No one was ever born a Newton or an Edwards. It is a patient and continued application that makes the great minds.