The Value of Poetry & Self-Acceptance

I think it is interesting that the month of April is not only National Poetry Month but also National Child Abuse Awareness month. To me, the two seemingly unrelated topics fit perfectly together. How are we to express something as horrific as child abuse without a form of poetry in which to convey and understand our feelings? Poetry in all its forms,  including song lyrics and dance (poetry in motion) is the perfect vehicle.

Child abuse affects everyone. There is not a person on this planet that is not somehow directly or indirectly affected by the cycle of abuse as it is passed down through the decades and centuries of civilization. It still affects us because the truth is that child abuse is still part of our society. Fortunately, we are now learning ways in which we can stop the cycle so as to prevent our future generations in becoming victims. None the less, the fabric of the abuse- the multitude of feelings, actions and reactions and expressions, which stem from our families of origins- are still carried with us, regardless of the awareness that we may or may not bring along with it. Where we differ is how we choose to embrace it.

Metaphorically, I like to think of my life as a garden. As a highly creative person with some sordid roots, my flowers and vegetables do not always grow in straight lines. The rows become a little curvy at times punctuated with weeds growing up sporadically. Unlike some people who are perpetually concerned about living a life in which everything fits neatly into rows and boxes.I don’t worry too much about how the garden is perceived by others.  Instead, I concern myself about the intrinsic beauty and love, which I am able to find and create within it. If a weed seems to add value to the garden by providing color or fragrance, I leave it. I take pride in my garden, not because it is perfect, but because I am able to embrace its flaws with perfect resignation. I know and understand that the soil, in which my garden grows, will never be able to produce a picture-perfect conventional garden and I am fine with that. I am much more concerned about the creative process in which I put into my garden and the fruit, which it yields in order to benefit others.

In other words, the compassion and awe, which I have for myself and my fellow human beings as well as my self-acceptance, has become inspiration for my creative self-expressions, usually presented in the form of songs with lyrics. The baggage and pain, which I have experienced along the way-either personally or through those close to me, have become fuel for beautiful poems, which I try to live and breathe every day. What an incredible, powerful gift is poetry! I hope that each of you will take the opportunity to breathe it in and embrace it, in whatever form you choose, this month.

With love and blessings….