From Two Halves (The Whole)

Poetry 2 min read
Photographer: Brad Neathery | Source: Unsplash

You smile with comfort,
connecting with new friends
on the outside, while
trying to steady the unstable
world wobbling within;
learning that life
is like a balancing act.

So this is Love?
These vibrations are good.
This blissful, fresh feeling
stirring in your chest,
yet still not satisfied -
you search for new sensations
made of thin metal blades
on your unbroken skin.
Unfulfilled, you look for
a fleeting feeling
of being alive.

You attain new levels of
academic achievements.
You get your first taste of
the sweetness they call success, yet…
you still seem empty ‘cause
you can’t see
what the heck is all this for.
Like really…
…what is all this for?

Now, 16:
With the adventure of life
before you,
there’s bold excitement
for what lies ahead
and also…
a growing gloom
of undeniable fear;
a dense fog settling
on a future unclear.

You’re right,
life is like a roller coaster.
It’s ‘ups’ and ‘downs’.
With dread
some choose
to close their eyes,
clench their teeth and make fist
while holding tight;

Others - joyfully scream
with delight
at the top of their lungs,
they let go
throw their hands with glee
to the skys.

Buckle up. It’s going to be
one hell of a ride.
Enjoy it and hopefully
one day you recognize
you are
not good,
nor bad -
rather, two halves
have come together
and made you -
beautifully human,
beautifully whole.

Now go,
an’ be beautiful
where you are.

Photographer: Rishabh Butola | Source: Unsplash

Shared with the student’s permission. This is what they wrote to a free writing response.

This is a creative (not related to topics) quick write I’ve worked on during the quick write time and also a bit outside of class.

Good Half:
I was 13 and I met this group of people. They became my everything. I was 14 and I fell in love with a beautiful lady. Everywhere with her was like heaven. I turned 15 and I was dedicated to studies and reached my top year of academics. I will turn 16 and I won’t run away. I will stay strong and take everything in. I will be older and become an adult. I’ll be happy doing things I like.

Bad Half:
I was 13 and I didn’t know what depression was. Well, I just didn’t know how it felt. I was 14 and I started cutting. It’s a form of self-harm and I still got the scars on my right arm. I turned 15 and started hating myself. I, myself, wasn't appreciated. I’m almost done with my freshman high school year, but I still don’t know what to do. What will I do? I’m scared I will turn 16 and I wouldn’t want to see other people anymore. How would I feel love from other people when I don't? I’m scared to become an adult to face the big big world. I feel like no one will help.

My life is like a roller coaster. I can go from smiling at heaven to falling down the hills of life. One poet said, “Never hold too tight in love so it won’t exit as painfully.” I think this can be related to life in general. Never hold on too tight in your bad halves, so you’ll have enough of yourself left for the good half.
poetry empathy relationships