The Nature of Suffering

The title of this piece comes from William Wordsworth, “Suffering is permanent,  obscure and dark.  And has the nature of infinity.” The lines spoke to me. They  reminded me of feelings that I’ve experienced repeatedly especially since October 2012. The poem itself was inspired by a prompt that I gave my students earlier this semester and although I didn’t follow the parameters of the prompt exactly I think it’s decent.


You can bottle up your sorrow
Hold it back with flimsy arms
Promising to feel it tomorrow
Eventually it will come spilling forth
Bringing you to your knees
It will stab you in your heart
Steal your ability to breathe.
When it hits you’ll wonder why
It hurts so bad that
All you can do is cry
This I know
I know for sure
You have to feel
Pain to cherish joy’s allure
You have to fail
You have to fall
To appreciate that life
Is worth living after all


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