My friend Keeley is one of my favourite people to talk with for hours. We sit in cafés and talk about the things we are learning, and we connect new ideas with old ones as we help each other round out our understanding of the world.
Keeley is a writer, too, but of a different kind. She is a poet, able to capture unique glimpses of humanity in lines and stanzas.
Recently, Keeley wrote this beautiful and thought-provoking poem that really resonates with me:
I have often felt like I am broken. Like what I really am is only a reflection of what I present to the world. Like I need to lie to continue to breathe, to cope.
I often felt like this in the months before and after my mom died in 2008.
Feelings like the ones “Reaching” evokes are also similar to the ones that led to my leaving the church several years ago. Falsity. A sense of shallowness. “Masquerading honesty”. “Skewed perception”. (Disclaimer: I don’t believe all church communities are like this. Mine was. Too many are.)
Go back and read Keeley’s poem again, if you can. It’s so nuanced and insightful.
I want to say more about this poem, but I am afraid of not doing Keeley’s words justice.
So I’ll let them speak for themselves.