Antilamentation: Regret Nothing.

 

 

“I am not sure that I exist, actually. I am all the writers that I have read, all the people that I have met, all the women that I have loved; all the cities I have visited.” ~ Jorge Luis Borges

I have a hard time letting go.

People, places, mistakes, they’re like ghosts or like water, flooding my mind, swelling my head. They come back to haunt me on rainy days with the bittersweet symphony of the shouldn’t, wouldn’t or couldn’t

I like to argue with myself:

“So tell me, Self, is there anything more desolate than the science of regret, the sound of my own voice in my head reverberating against walls I didn’t mean to build, but now I can’t unbuild?”

Where are you, Self?

“Yes,” Self takes her time. “Forgetting the chances you did take, the truth that was good enough to be spoiled, the story that captivated you enough to make you feel interrupted… a silent happiness perhaps, but loud enough to make you miss it when it stops talking. The stories that regret erased, and now you’re wasting ink on wasted ink.”

Keep going, Self: 

“Maybe, there are no mistakes, but only poor(er) choices, no right or wrong, only selection, no good or bad, only choice. No adjectives, really, only nouns, You, Me, Lifeology. No failure. Regret is like an unending funeral of undead things…”

And I keep quiet.



And then I stumble upon one of my favorite living poets. And she may have written this Antilamentation just for me, in times just like these.

And you, Sad Self on the other side of this screen,  may just need to read it.

 

 

Antilamentation

By Dorianne Laux

Regret nothing. Not the cruel novels you read
to the end just to find out who killed the cook.
Not the insipid movies that made you cry in the dark,
in spite of your intelligence, your sophistication.


Not the lover you left quivering in a hotel parking lot,
the one you beat to the punchline, the door, or the one
who left you in your red dress and shoes, the ones
that crimped your toes, don’t regret those.


Not the nights you called god names and cursed
your mother, sunk like a dog in the living-room couch,
chewing your nails and crushed by loneliness.


You were meant to inhale those smoky nights
over a bottle of flat beer, to sweep stuck onion rings
across the dirty restaurant floor, to wear the frayed
coat with its loose buttons, its pockets full of struck matches.


You’ve walked those streets a thousand times and still
you end up here. Regret none of it, not one
of the wasted days you wanted to know nothing,
when the lights from the carnival rides
were the only stars you believed in, loving them
for their uselessness, not wanting to be saved.


You’ve traveled this far on the back of every mistake,
ridden in dark-eyed and morose but calm as a house
after the TV set has been pitched out the upstairs
window. Harmless as a broken ax. Emptied
of expectation.

 

Relax.

 

Don’t bother remembering
any of it.

 

Let’s stop here, under the lit sign
on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.

 

 

*****

 

Antilamentation Lounge: 

>> How to recycle a compostable heart.

>> The Voyagers: of love & life & Carl Sagan’s cosmic time capsule. 

 

 

{Forget Regret}

 

P.S. Sign up for my Museletter for FREE creative resources, soulful life tips & game-changing inspiration. 

 

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Andrea Balt
Co-Founder/Editor-in-Chief of Rebelle Society, Wellness Alchemist at Rebelle Wellness & Professional Dream Chaser at Creative Rehab. Unfinished book with a love for greens, bikes and poetry; raised by wolves & adopted by people; not trying to make art but to Be Art. Holds a BA in Journalism & Mass Communication, an MFA in Creative Writing & a Holistic Health Coach degree from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition®. In her work she tries to reflect the wholeness of the human experience by combining Art & Health + Mind & Body + Darkness & Brilliance into a more alive, unabridged and unlimited edition of ourselves. She is also on a quest to reinstate Creativity as one of our essential Human Rights to (hopefully and soon) be included in the UN Declaration. Connect with her in the Social Media Jungle via Facebook, Twitter & Instagram and sign up for her FREE MuseLetter.

16 Comments

  • Jeanette LeBlanc commented on October 11, 2012 Reply
    Oh, lovely Andrea…. are you talking to me today, or what? Thank you for this. Now, when are we having our wine/skype date. Long over due, sister. Long overdue.
  • Mamaste
    mamastenyc commented on October 11, 2012 Reply
    We have to have a party! Let’s all make a date, wine in hand, chocolate nearby and for health…kale chips. And let’s Skype (I think Google + is the answer for a group call) and meet each other. Who’s in? xoxo ~Mamaste
    • Tracy Wisneski
      Tracy commented on December 19, 2012 Reply
      Me! Me! Me!
  • Tanya Lee Markul
    tanya lee markul commented on October 11, 2012 Reply
    Loved this. No wine for me though – green juice for now. (borrrrrring) :-)
  • Stefanie commented on October 12, 2012 Reply
    I never knew I loved poetry until I started reading your posts. No regrets, because I know now.
    • Andrea Balt
      Andrea Balt commented on April 9, 2013 Reply
      So glad to her that, Stephanie. My reply is arriving a little late. Found sheep on the road.
  • Ruby Bernardo
    Ruby S. Bernardo commented on December 19, 2012 Reply
    A very dear friend (soulmate as I’d like to believe) once told me, there are no mistakes – just outcomes. I love and needed this. Thank you Andrea and I’m all in! How about a ‘grand meet’ anywhere in the world for Rebelles?
    • Tracy Wisneski
      Tracy commented on December 19, 2012 Reply
      <3
  • Tracy Wisneski
    Tracy commented on December 19, 2012 Reply
    From the very beginning of this, this Asha Tyson quote was ringing in my ears, “Your journey has molded you for the greater good, and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don’t think that you’ve lost time. It took each and every situation that you’ve encountered to bring you to the now and now is right on time.” I love this post and this message! And I’m entirely too excited at the thought of a cyber date with such enchanting new friends!
    • Andrea Balt
      Andrea Balt commented on April 9, 2013 Reply
      Thanks for sharing that Tracy. Spot on. Rebelle Wine Party coming soon.
  • Liz Kelly Zook commented on April 9, 2013 Reply
    Yes. A million times yes. I couldn’t sleep the other night, thinking on past mistakes and worry. Today I will read this poem before I close my eyes and I feel that I will sleep soundly. Thank you for sharing this beautiful piece.
  • Sheila Jaillet
    Sheila Jaillet commented on April 9, 2013 Reply
    “You’ve traveled this far on the back of every mistake”~this is the mantra I use to find gratitude for the whole of it. Love, love, love. Antilamentation. I think this word will go up on my board for a while. Thank you for sharing your find! “Let’s stop here, under the lit sign on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.” xoxo.
  • Rachel commented on July 5, 2013 Reply
    YES. Just Yes.

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