Poetry For Our Time

Poetry heals the wounds inflicted by reason. -Novalis

This I Believe

with 6 comments

For this week’s poem, I was inspired by the “This I Believe” essays from NPR.  It needs some editing, and isn’t really a poem, but… oh well!

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I believe that people learn the best and most important things when they are not being assessed, and I believe the best and most important thing we can learn is love.  Love has no rubric save for the opinions of others, and until we have learned love ourselves, we can be harsh graders.  

It is so easy to see the young couple, the beaming bride walking down the aisle to her nervous groom, and think, They are so young.  They have no idea what is in store for them; they haven’t explored all of their options yet.  Perhaps we do this because we see ourselves in that young, happy couple, and our experiences tell us that the happiness most often ends in sadness.  But we forget about life’s ups and downs, and that the sadness will eventually give way to happiness once again.

We all know of the transient nature of relationships; we have experienced it ourselves, and trust in a relationship is not something that is learned easily.  It takes test after test, lesson after lesson, to make us believe that a lasting love exists, and can withstand those tests and lessons that life throws at it.  Once we learn that lesson, though, our hearts and minds are opened to endless possibilities.  Love, whatever its manifestation, however old, experienced, or tested, is the most important lesson life has for us.  This I believe.

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Written by Ashley

April 13, 2009 at 1:14 pm

Posted in Poem

6 Responses

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  1. Aww Samsa i wish i was better at criticism but all i got is that its very like mushy i guess but in a good way. holy fudge you softy you lol

    gorditodelgado

    April 14, 2009 at 5:47 am

    • I know; I’m getting soft in my old age.

      Ashley

      April 16, 2009 at 2:51 pm

  2. I really don’t have any critical comments. I just wanted to say that this piece definitely speaks to a place I am at right now…that space where you sort of forget that good things have power and balance with the bad, and how lovely and surprising the good is when you find it again. Thanks.

    cd40

    April 16, 2009 at 3:59 am

    • Wow… thanks, Chels. I hope now you are finding lovely and surprising things.

      I guess I’m kind of at the opposite end of that, where I want to just shake everyone and say: “It will get better! Everything that happens can’t be the worst possible thing or the biggest mistake of your life!” And what is life but a series of mistakes and lessons, and of, of course, beautiful moments, anyway?

      Ashley

      April 16, 2009 at 2:55 pm

  3. I’ll echo Chelsey’s comment… it spoke to me as well.

    Like here:

    “Love has no rubric save for the opinions of others, and until we have learned love ourselves, we can be harsh graders.”

    and here:

    “But we forget about life’s ups and downs, and that the sadness will eventually give way to happiness once again.”

    I would, however, like to question/comment/debate about this line:

    “Once we learn that lesson, though, our hearts and minds are opened to endless possibilities.”

    That line sort of makes me think that one (hopefully) will get to the point where that lesson has been learned. But I don’t think we can ever really stop learning that lesson. I’m probably not making sense, so I’ll try with a loosely-related dialogue I had recently… I was talking to someone yesterday about the many changes I’ve been finding within myself lately, and that person reminded me that perhaps it’s not “I have changed,” but rather, “I am changing and always changing”… that I shouldn’t try to “crystallize something that isn’t meant to be still.” (This is a direct quote from that person, and I’m pretty much in love with it.) I’m wondering how that perspective would play into your writing here.

    Also, this made me subscribe to the “This I Believe” podcast. 🙂

    Molly M M

    April 17, 2009 at 1:22 am

    • Makes total sense. I’ve been playing with another paragraph in there, and I think this advice will help that fit better. Rock on!

      Ashley

      April 17, 2009 at 3:42 am


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