Posted by: Mark Nielsen | November 10, 2007

When Life Is Long – another brooding little poem by Mark Nielsen

The Mission - “Burdened” 

When life is long

and ideals are dying daily

and dreams are dashed

and love is what it is:

neither amazing nor absent…

When it’s Monday morning

and it’s November

and it’s cloudy

And you’re trying

And succeeding

And failing…

When there are reasons

for both joy and despair

but you have to hunt for both…

What can you do?
(Let you be You.)

Do you take a chill pill

to hold despair at a distance

(pretending it’s not pursuing)

to pull sagging confidence up

(like a floppy pair of socks)

to pull yourself up by your bootstraps

(though boots haven’t had straps in years)

to level off the highs

(a plateau to stand on, but no true peak from which to see)

to raise the floor

(so low ain’t so low–yet without raising the roof)?

Do you chuck it all

Run away

Start from scratch

with someone new–

or *as* someone new?

No, here’s what you do: let you be You.

And though you have reason to worry

Do not worry.

And though you have reason to grieve

Look for comfort in that grief.
Let God be God.

Let you be You.
Do not drink to manufacture false joy

(for drunkenness is merely pain playing the fool, masquerading as joy).

Do not eat to fill up the hole inside

(for you are already whole

when God is God

and you are You).
And for God’s sake

(and Yours)

Don’t take it all so seriously.

Seriously, dude.

For the Dude Abides.


Because He is.

And you are. You.

[Author’s note: the stanza separations above are all screwed up, but I got tired of fighting with the software for proper formatting. Should have been a new stanza up in there somewhere, devoted just to fighting with computers and other technology: “When a Return is not really a return/And to Enter and re-enter makes you want to exit…”]


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