Something beautiful, she said, can come from pain – Blog Post #7

In times of adversity, beautiful things can be born. Art, poetry, music, novels, these are all things that can be created during darkness. For example, to use something personal, the time when I lived at my father’s house was dark. It was a game of Survivor (that was one of his favourites), where you had to make pacts with each other, fend for yourself, work as a team to get what you wanted, and betray your siblings when the time was right. My father tried to pit us against each other. We weren’t living, we were surviving.

During this time, I turned to poetry as a way to relieve some of the pressure of the world I lived in. Some of my best pieces were written during that time of darkness. Some were written after, where I was finally free to feel my emotions. You see, when someone has to live their life in an environment where they must “conceal, don’t feel”, they become tightly wound. And when they’re finally free, they unwind. It may seem like being free is making them worse – they have intense bouts of anger or sadness at the smallest things – but in reality, it’s just them releasing those years of pent-up emotions.

Needless to say, the time after I moved out was just as dark as the time I was there. And yet, my best poems are from those times. The poems that bring people to tears, give goosebumps, leave people speechless, force them to read it over and over and over again so they can completely understand the entire depth of the meaning and feeling behind that piece. In fact, one of the poems I wrote was about this topic specifically. It was inspired by something a coworker said to me while we were discussing poetry. She talked about how the best poems she’s read have been poems about pain and darkness. “The best poetry is made from pain,” she said.

The best poetry is made from pain
She said.
Break ups in the rain like a
Derailed train that
Leave you scared to hear their name
The best poetry is made from pain
She said.
The pain of never being the same
Of the messed up words from your messed up
The pain of being the last to remain
Of a family who left you for cocaine
And fame,
As if your life and feelings were a game
They played to make you insane
As if you were the one and only bane
Of their existence.
As if you were a raging hurricane
And they expected you to be the Cain
To their Abel.
The best poetry is made from pain
She said.
The pain of having to daily re-explain
Who you are
Cause the people who raised you became
The pain of never having a photo in a frame
Because you were considered inhumane
And abandoned.
The pain of wanting so badly to drain
Your veins
And hope
For the best.
The best poetry is made from pain
She said
Hoping, wishing, working all in vain
No strength left anymore to sustain
The strain
Failure spreading, staying like a stain
All over
Until no more skin can remain
The best poetry is made from pain
She said.
The pain we feel and see with disdain
And try to contain and detain.
Something beautiful
She said
Can come from pain

However, art is not the only thing that’s beautiful. I am who I am today because of what my father did to me. I am also something beautiful that came from darkness.


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