Effort. {prose poetry}


In the mirror I am not my perception of me. The glass can tell me I am ugly or coarse. The glass wants me to be broken. I resist.

This life was never meant to be a walk on the sandy shore of happiness. This life does not present one hundred ways to forget ourselves; it gives us one thousand reasons to realize how hard it is to crack open a coconut, but how sweet the reward.

The first blaze of joy is brilliant, the second blaze great, the third alright, the fourth mediocre. Without the contrast of a sharp bite of grief, an obstacle to make us think twice, a reason to reflect, a reason to stand back, happiness fades into nothing.

If you cannot break the glass, close your eyes. You are who you are. In seven years or seven lifetimes, learn one form of self-love and walk from there.

I understand you write to express yourself
Why is it all you share are the complaints?
Teach me to appreciate your struggles by
Showing me your triumphs.
An eclipse is only a sun or a
Without the other.

I cannot claim to understand the struggles of you. I cannot claim to relate to your darkest fears, nor see the weaknesses you insist you have. I cannot say you are not conscious or not doing the best you can. You are. What feelings you project around you, what colors you choose to dress yourself in, what memories you dwell on are the perceptions of yourself you present to the world. The world is accepting. People are not as conscious as the sun. Each day it rises with intention. People rise but sometimes forget their intention.

Be as myriad as the night sky
Be the blackness but
Can you be the stars?

Why do you shudder in the face of something that requires you to try and try again? Measuring yourself to the people who have done it makes you feel small even though you are big. You can say it is hard. You will be believed. Too soon you will come to believe yourself. Can you find a streak of strength and say you are not afraid to try? Waste not the days in silent solitude collecting cobwebs and dust. You need not emerge only to be a rainbow. Step forth in an invisible blaze.

You are not alone
A fingertip away is another hand
Together you rise.
If you refuse to fade by day
Your halo turns to clouds at dawn.

What is this feeling you decide to feel? What is this shame you impose upon yourself? What are these words: failure, weakness, sorrow, tears, impossible, shortcomings? We have not decided these words are negative, others have decided for us. Decide for yourself. Is negative negative?

It is snowing in January
When the sun sets
The flakes turn pink
For three seconds you do not believe your eyes
You do.


Jaya Avendel is a word witch from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, writing family into fantasy through poetry and prose. Her writing has been published at Visual Verse, Spillwords Press, Mookychick, and Black Flowers, among others. She writes personally at Nin Chronicles.


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