On the day that we celebrate the incredible transformational life of MLK, I wanted to share this small poem I wrote. About five months ago, I had this overwhelming urge to start writing something deeper than a journal entry. So, I bought a fancy journal and on the front page I entitled it, I HAVE A VOICE in defiance of some of the events in my life that threatened to convince me otherwise. On the day that we celebrate the incredible transformational life of MLK, a life filled with great light and surrounded with great darkness, I hope to honor that spirit by sharing the first poem I wrote.
Having not written a great deal of poetry in my life, I think I always assumed that the “great poets’” words must have come to them in a state of subliminal ecstasy, or at least some sort of mountaintop experience. So far, my writing has come to me through anger, frustration and despair. This poem was inspired by my fury after an event in my life.
I have had the deep privilege to play and sing for many weddings and funerals. It is one of my favorite things to do because they are such significant moments in life that seem to need something more than words to define them. Being given the privilege to contribute music that can transcend words is always a distinct honor. And so, one Saturday afternoon I found myself playing the piano for a beautiful wedding.
You could feel the love in the room and the joy of everyone gathered. The bride was gorgeous and glowing and moved to tears. Then, the officiant made a joke about how much the bride was crying and continued the joke a few times through the ceremony. I could feel the sickening knot in my stomach grow every time she was teased.
I went home and was furious! Tears are HOLY. Whether in joy or sorrow, they are the sign that we are deeply moved by life and that we are connected to our life force. Tears are the agents for healing, joy, transformation and the important work of grief. Just like singing, TEARS have saved my life. I believe that to some degree, diseases are in part caused by unfelt and undigested emotional experiences. We must awaken and process the most joyous to the most painful experiences in our lives. Only then can we heal.
So in response, I wrote this poem: