Why Write Poetry?

Blog Title Why Write Poetry

Let’s try something new. (Explicit)

A long time ago, in a classroom far far away… I wanted to be a writer.

There was a lot of darkness in my life at the time, between poverty, abuse, and the typical youthful angst of trying to understand where I fit into the world.

I had crafted these feelings into a beautifully orchestrated story of light and dark I’d hoped to someday publish as a trilogy. I guess, looking back, that this was a way for me to direct and control the energy I held onto living in those conditions.

Long story short, I took a creative writing class in high school, where I made attempt after attempt to impress my teacher with my writing (I really needed to be validated at the time). Needless to say, she wasn’t impressed…

I mean, come on. I took ninth grade English in twelfth grade (largely due to my decision to be ANYWHERE other than school). Give a kid a break, but I was largely discouraged from writing my unsettlingly dark attempts at narratives.

But one day! It was time for poetry, and I would write my very first poem (which I am lucky enough to remember to this day). Here… I’ll share it with you (because you’re nice).

Untitled Poem 1 (Circa 2005 ish…)

Snow Snow,
go away.

Snow snow,
fuck you
you suck.

And there you have it! With that, and a handful of other poems written in assignment, my teacher’s voice would live forever imbued into my mind, “Your poems are really good! Much better than your narrative writings!”….

…..

……

: )

Oh, it’s fine. I found, that in my personal life, I used poetry often (generally in love letters to crushes and when I chose to be a not so “secret” admirer of girls).

Beyond my passive attempts towards writing my trilogy every few years, writing was always something I wanted to do, but could never stick with long enough to make any real distance with it. But, like most of us, there was a pretty triggering event that bridged my connection to my poetry…

In 2019, my mother died (yes, I’m adopted; while I will reference my biological mother at times (who I have much love for), when I say, “my mother” I’m referring to my adoptive mother).

There’s nothing easy about losing someone you love. There’s nothing anyone can say that really makes it feel any better, and there’s really no new-age spiritual self-help ideas that make it any easier to let go. I was a wreck…

This experience taught me that I’d never really learned how to deal with emotions in a truly honest way. I had learned to compartmentalize and suppress my emotions, because that’s what I had needed to do my whole life to survive and to at least pretend to function with all of the anxiety and depression that hid within my shadow.

My mother was an anchor I’d never realized I had in the world. An anchor of love, where in all of the darkness and loneliness I might find in the world, I always had her love to find shelter in… I really unraveled for a bit after she passed.

That’s when I discovered the power in writing poetry…

You see, I take these tangled ideas and emotions, like a box of tangled cords and cables you never quite figured out what to do with, and I put them onto paper. I think about them for hours. I deconstruct and reconstruct them until they emerge as true and recognizable emotions and memories. Writing poetry, is how I reach the parts of myself that I have, through time, sealed away in the deepest parts of myself.

This is how I tear down these walls between me and myself.

Well, anyway. The blog side of the house is new for me, but trauma has left my memory generally unreliable, and this may be my best hope for journaling the most beautiful parts of my life (for which there are many, and I am grateful for).

If you connect with and enjoy my poetry, I am sorry; for it means you are likely a friend to loss as I am; but also, I am grateful to be with you, and to know that we not alone..

Published by John Onyx

A poet of the lost, the found, and the in-between. Iā€™m interested in collaborating with photographers, musicians, and videographers on larger projects. Feel free to email me at me@johnonyx.com if interested!

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