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Keep My Heart Open
Hello! I was reflecting on the ways I’ve been projected onto most of my life and how I keep most people at arm’s length as a result. Lo and behold, I penned this while in the Caribbean. I put off posting it for a few weeks because it feels so vulnerable and raw.
Without further ado, please enjoy this very long form poetry.
I keep my heart open to all of life’s experiences… except people. I keep my energy to me. I’m impenetrable, so I don’t penetrate. Why so closed? Why so serious? Me in my fullness is only for those who’ve deemed themselves worthy of my being. Harsh. I laugh it off and proclaim I’m picky about who I let into my field. True… but not the whole truth. The reality is I’m protecting myself. From everything, and nothing. These are old protective mechanisms still running their course, Ingrained within me since I was a child. Maybe even older than that, A pattern that runs generations of women. You see, my energy is coveted. My entire life people have desired me to be this way Or that. Perceived me in one way, Judged me when I didn’t fit the mold. But I’ve never fit any molds Except those of my own making. Limitations of the mind Telling me who to be, What’s right from wrong. I’m perfect. Too perfect. So perfect that you either ostracize me Or project onto me whoever you want me to be. A trap we’ve both set for me, Don’t you see? It’s one I can’t seem to escape, Even with awareness. So what makes me so special? Absolutely nothing, and yet, everything about me. This isn’t my pattern alone, but it’s mine alone to bear. It’s my own fault for acquiescing my energy to others I’ve done this for far too long Where there were once hedges to the entrance of my garden Are now towering stone walls. You think I’m standoffish? You think I think I’m too good for you? No, I know an energy vampire when I see one. Or maybe I’m still just a little girl who is looked at too often, A little girl who is always the example for others. If I don’t perform perfectly, Why would they continue to choose me? If I don’t show up as my best, Is the effort worth doing? If I don’t give 110%, Who is going to get the job done? When I show up as anything less, I’m pushed to be more. Never satisfactory in me just being me. Maybe it’s others’ expectations that crush me into quiet blandness. You see, appearing boring is safe. You don’t covet what doesn’t interest you. I may feel safer under my mask, But you actually prefer it. Why have I set this standard? Why has everyone always enforced it? Don’t you see I am brilliant, A blinding light, A soul of fire, All encompassing in Being. I carry the world of creation, The beauty of all, The kiss of death. My spark lights others afire, For when I shine, I challenge. But people don’t like to be challenged. They like to conquer. You see, They always want to keep me Slowly dimming my light to enliven theirs. I give a peak at the flowers of my soul And they think I’m Rapunzel begging to be saved. No, I’m just trying to slowly tear down the walls I’ve built. Repattern myself in a way that serves my Being. You’ve misconstrued your place of importance within me. Don’t assume a different dynamic from what I’m showing I’m multi-faceted Isn’t this what I’ve been trying to tell you? Don’t box me into your expectations. But you can’t help it. Because my energy is coveted. You see, I am a priestess, Like all the women before me. My beauty draws you in, My projected blandness keeps you at bay. And me safe… and alone. It’s interesting holding the duality of this experience, Simultaneously feeling not enough I do everything in my power Consciously and unconsciously keeping this energy hidden, and me safe… and alone. And yet, all too much. For when I shine, The sun is the only comparable brilliance. And those who are cloaked Are blinded. Now they’re angry I’ve pierced their veil. I hide My true Beingness behind knowledge. Well read in wisdom, Looking to experience as my teacher. I have desires, needs, opinions, thoughts… But rarely share them Because people don’t actually listen. It’s better to just keep me to me, I guess I’ve been conditioned to believe It’s better to not be seen. I hide My emotionality behind neutrality. I rage like an incoming storm, Kicking and screaming to be seen. I freak out and think the world is ending, I break my heart with a smile and laugh. I cry when I’m frustrated, and then I’m castrated. And cast out Because my capacity for pain equals that of pleasure. And oh, do I revel in the pleasure. Getting high off endorphins Knowing the only limits are the ones I set. Gratitude is the attitude. Blessing the depth because I know Without it, I would have never reached These heights. Feeling it all is the gift of life. How can I feel everything and nothing at all, all at once? Realizing, in the end, peace is the adequate baseline. And to find pleasure in the spectrum of experience Is either masochistic or the key to enlightenment Despite the inner turmoil, the surface is a picture of grace, For I have tended my garden. Knowing the impermanence of it all makes me question if it’s even worth it. Maybe I should let myself unfurl. Will you bask in my potency As I do when I’m alone? Can you hold the brilliance of my bloom Without picking me, uprooting my life force? Killing me softly… And slowly. Okay, stop being dramatic, It’s just belittling my experience to life in a vase. Contained, definable Once again, an object of beauty To be looked at, but not of real importance Severed from the life force Powers tucked neatly away Buried in the backyard Next to the bones of lost loves No wonder I like being by myself. I can be silly and serious, Witty and out of my wits, Sensual and stubborn, Magnetizing and mourning, And all expressions of being embodied Without judgment and expectation. Maybe this is the long lost secret, Why I keep people out When all I want is to let them in. I just want to let someone in. Why don’t I let anyone in? I want to open myself up fully to you. Yet when I try, The barricades stand erect. They say this isn’t the path Try another lane The scenic route isn’t accessible to you, You like picking flowers. I want to love you. And let you love me. Like trees love the sunlight, Like the ocean loves the current, Like the horizon loves the sunrise, A symbiotic relationship of consciousness. Nothing special about it, Yet, uniquely special because of its expression. I don’t want to be special to you. In that, you put me on a pedestal Trapping me in my own box of perfection Constricting me until it all becomes a performance The real me slowly ceasing to show the true parts of myself I don’t want to be the reason the illusion is killed. And yet, I must kill the illusion of me. This protection has run its course. To embody myself fully, I must let myself be seen in my fullness. That’s the difference between Knowing and Being. And yet, you still covet me. Don’t you see how deep the roots are? You think I’m a flower, Baby, I’m the entire meadow, Weeds and all. Do you want to pick the weeds? I think they’re quite beautiful, Flowering in their own elegance. You see, you can’t just pick the flowers you like, Condemning me to a life lived in glass. It’s all or nothing. Even the crunching grass, The buzzing bees, The breeze ruffling my petals. It’s all me. And yet, that’s the illusion, Because that’s what you see. I’m not simply what you see, Even when you see the entirety of me. That’s still just the perception. The true me is what you can’t see. Because I am also the roots, The packed earth, The mycelium network. All of it. For you to truly have me, You must discover your roots first. Because once you see How interconnected it must all be You wouldn’t covet me. Or only pick the pieces of me That are appeasing to the senses. And yet, you still covet me. You desire the fullness of me To reflect the fullness of you. And shallow is the reflection. But maybe, that’s just my biased perception. I crack this foundation in hopes of letting new light in. I burst the bubble to let the water flow. Show me the garden of your soul And maybe, just maybe, I’ll let you in, For I’m no longer complacent basking in shallow reflection. Boring is the perfect life. I need dirt-caked nails from crawling to the depths of your own psyche Only to discover it was a perception all along. Tend your own meadow, Instead of picking flowers from mine. There’s a reason you get lost in the soul of my eyes. I’m not in denial, Yet, I still deny all access Is this the refusal of my own power? Yes, no, maybe. I guess I still am the example Just no longer playing perfect. For someone has to reveal their depth first To give permission to others. I guess this is the reason my energy is coveted. There’s a reason I’m so protective of it. But like chiseling a marble statue, I’m slowly chipping away Revealing the priestess that’s always been hidden within. I am the manifestation of creation The embodiment of loving kindness The kiss of beauty And the brush of death. I am it all And yet, you think you can own me? Silly human, I don’t even own myself. My shine is not competition or to be coveted It’s a challenge for you to burn brighter. We are all souls having a human experience. So why am I so uncomfortable under your gaze? Why don’t I let you in?
I bare aches in my heart and my soul’s experience in this piece, and I appreciate you taking the time to read.
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