I still love sad poetry. I love to know that hearts are still able to heal after suffering. It brings me comfort to know that loneliness doesn’t last. I smile when I think Spring comes after Winter, and the sun still rises in the morning. I still love sad poetry. It brings me hope when days are long and nights are cold. I still believe in new beginnings when I read stanzas of tears on a page, and I see broken hearts in the smiles of strangers. I still love sad poetry. I still write sad poetry. It makes me feel, and it makes me think, and it helps me remember the days when I wasn’t sad.
When I searched the meaning of the word ‘intentional,’ I found the following definition; ‘done on purpose’ or ‘deliberate.’ The word ‘purpose’ means ‘the reason for doing something.’ So overall, the word intentional means there is a specific reason you do what you do. There is a particular outcome you desire, something you want to see or achieve through your actions, thoughts, and words daily. I’ve been thinking of my intentions lately, why I do what I do every day, even the simple or mundane things. Why do I clean our home, do laundry, binge-watch series, or eat certain things? Then I realised that some of the everyday things I do sometimes don’t have any purpose. Sometimes, I do it because it’s my excuse not to do what I’m supposed to be doing, for example, watching a series when I should be working on my novel. Those things are not intentional; they are easy. I do it because I am programmed to do it through years of doing the same thing every day. When I write or share something on my blog or podcast, I don’t just do it because I am programmed to do it. I do it to inspire and motivate others or to share a relatable part of my life so that others might feel seen or heard and less alone. That is the purpose, the intention of my writing.
QUESTIONS ABOUT MY INTENTIONS
Then I asked myself how many things I do that are intentional or have a purpose. The answer was few, which made me sad and a little bit angry at myself. I want to go through life with a purpose and a clear direction for my life. I want my life to mean something. I want my work to mean something. At the end of my life, I want to know that I have fulfilled what God put me here to do. I want to be more intentional about my thoughts, actions, and words, whether written or spoken. I want it to bring life to others.
HOW TO BE MORE INTENTIONAL
The question then came to me: What can I do or what should I do if I want to be more intentional? It’s certainly not easy because being intentional requires doing the work. It takes renewing your mind and changing old habits into new habits. However, it is not impossible. For one, whenever you experience a negative thought creeping into your mind, you stop before it overtakes you and switch to the more upbeat, life-giving alternative. Give your thoughts purpose. When you want to watch a third consecutive episode of the current series you’re watching, stop and ask yourself, is there a reason for this? Will this help me fulfill my purpose? What can I do instead? Write, create art, call a friend or family member and check in, go for a walk and clear your mind, pray, or read. Simple things like that can awaken a part of you that you thought had died long ago. I think of the story of Ruth and Naomi in the Bible. When Ruth went out to work in the fields, Naomi realised that the land belonged to Boaz. Later in the story, Naomi instructs Ruth to go to the threshing floor so that she may find a husband and a new home. There was purpose in Naomi’s actions, and there was intention. Eventually, that filtered down through the rest of history.
YOU STILL HAVE A PURPOSE
I’d like to believe that when we wake in the morning, God still has a purpose for our lives, which means we have no choice but to be intentional about who we are and what we do. God himself was intentional when He created us. Knowing that should give us enthusiasm for the day ahead and excitement to fulfill that purpose. It should make us curious about what life offers so that when we lay our heads down at night, exhausted but fulfilled, we know we have completed what God has called us to do. Every single day we have on this earth is a gift. We don’t get the same day twice, and time moves swiftly. Let’s be intentional about how we use the time we have.
I don’t want to lie on my deathbed someday; whether that eventually is thirty or forty years or three weeks from now; and be buried underneath all my regrets.
I need to create.
I need to leave something that will live long after I’ve left this earth.
I question whether anyone will remember me for what I’ve left behind and if it is even important.
I want to spend every day of my life creating and as I sit herewriting this, I feel myself becoming emotional; tears run down my cheeks and I know, without a shadow of a doubt that this is truly my calling.
I need to create.
In the same way I need to breath.
I need to create something out of nothing.
I need to fill blank pages with my sorrows, worries, and fears and turn it into something beautiful to share with others.
I need to express my thoughts and dreams and connect with others.
And that is ultimately why I need to create, why I need to write. Why my life needs to be an open book.
I need to build a bridge between my fears and another’s loneliness.
I want to leave breadcrumbs in the form of poetry and stories so that someone else can find their way and their voice.
I need to share my life so that another person can be brave enough to share their story.
It is my calling.
Every day that passes that I do not write, express or create, feels truly wasted. On those days I feel as if I’ve betrayed my calling. I have wasted an entire day not living as I should.
I feel as if I did not live at all.
Even when I’ve tried to avoid it, when I’ve tried to ignore it. When I told myself it wasn’t important, there was always this nagging feeling inside me, tugging at me, pushing me in a certain direction.
And I knew, it was futile trying to turn my back on it; I am an artist. I am a creative.
You may not always understand what I create, you may not always enjoy what I share and you may even mock and laugh at me but that will only encourage me more.
Knowing that I am an artist, reminds me that I must createevery day. It is not just a calling but it is also a responsibility.
Writing is an art; the blank page is my canvas, words are my paint and the world and this life is my muse.
What you finally see before you; is my work of art.
Writing is a release for me. Almost like therapy but without the talking.
When I write down my feelings and thoughts that have kept me hostage or that have made me feel sad or heartbroken or angry and I stare at it on the page before me, I feel a sense of freedom. Almost as if I let go of something. I feel as if I can breath easier, as if I’ve made space in my heart and my spirit for better and more beautiful things.
It’s a healing process. I never want to stop experiencing this when I write. I never want to stop writing.
Even if I never become a best-selling author and no one ever reads anything I write, I’d like to know I’ve left a trail of breadcrumbs to feed someone’s soul.
we are shaped by our experiences but we can choose how to live out those experiences. We choose how to live, we choose whether we give up or go on. We choose to forgive.
life demands of you to be intentional; intentional about your actions, your energy, your focus, your thoughts and emotions.
It hasn’t been easy but it has been fulfilling
love is one of the most if not the most powerful source of hope we have on this earth
Its not just okay to live as your authentic self, its absolutely necessary.
do not fear. do not tremble. do not question or second guess
These hard, tiring and busy days won’t last.
Your ability to nurture, love, care and encourage is God-given.
break out of the mould you created for yourself with all the things you thought you knew
I hope you relinquish all expectations you had of yourself for this next season and simply enjoy being alive.
Even if it fails, at least you know that you tried.
We all have a place in our minds where we wish to go, things we want to do and places we want to see but if I’ve learned anything, these last few years, is that you won’t get there if you don’t get moving.
It’s a beautiful day. The dog dreams. I breathe
Better to have a moment of awkwardness than to have a lifetime of regret.
The 11th of October. That’s the last time I wrote a blog post and in all honesty, I didn’t write it from scratch, it was a recycled post from years ago but still, that was the last time you saw anything from Words In Verse. I’ve been battling to write; I’m not sure if the battle stems from laziness, tiredness, busyness or a lack of creativity and ideas but I haven’t written in a long time. The problem is I want to write. I need to write. There are many times I find myself seeing something or hearing something and I want to turn it into a story or I want to write about it and explore it from my own perspective but I don’t. I let it slip away from me and disappear. And if you’re a writer, you know that once you have an idea, you better write it down because once it disappears, you won’t get it back.
So here I am, writing about not being able to write. Funny thing is, I love writing. I love reading as well but I haven’t done much of that either lately. Writing and reading go hand in hand; if you’re not reading, its almost impossible to write. I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things. I also want to reevaluate what I write about. I remember about two years ago when I had my very first WIV blog (which is now gone) the blog posts I wrote were raw and honest and relatable to many people. I felt fearless when I wrote and published my posts and I felt fulfilled when someone would tell me how they felt reading what I wrote. I knew I was fulfilling my purpose, my calling and my ministry.
My husband will tell you I have a ton of unfinished stories that I started writing (one or two are done) but which I either stopped working on and refuse to touch again. He has been my biggest supporter; always telling me to finish my books and get it published and telling me what a great writer I am and there are moments when I believe him; when I read some of the stuff I’ve written and I think ‘Woah, okay, I’m pretty good at this’ in a non- arrogant way of course, but then there are those moments, which come more often than the former, whereimposter syndromecreeps in and destroys all the confidence and belief I had in myself. Once that is destroyed, it’s really difficult to get it back.
Another reason I think I’ve been afraid to write is because of the content I want to publish. I want to be that brave person again that tells honest stories; I write from experience and we all know experiences are not always comfortable; for yourself or for others to share in or experience and I know when I write certain things, a lot of people might frown upon it and I think that has also been a huge block for me.
But I don’t want it to be anymore. I want to write. I need to write and I need to share. I always say to my husband or to people I interact with, you never know who needs hear your story and who will be inspired, encouraged or motivated by it. We all go through difficult experiences and I believe that if we choose to share our experiences, in whichever way we choose to do so, it will help someone else. I’m not suggesting we save the whole world but touching one person, might save another.
So here I am, putting my struggles out there ; of being a writer who has been unable to write and I’m hoping that by doing this and by sharing this, that it will help me be brave enough to start writing again and to start sharing again; despite the fear of being judged or criticized or not believing in myself.
The truth is, I need to see for myself where this journey will take me; this journey of writing and sharing and exposing myself to a world I have yet to discover. In the end, we will never know we are good at something and we will never know the impact we have, if we don’t at least give it our best shot.
Being a writer is a very lonely thing to be. Unlike a band of musicians working together to create a symphony; a writer is but one person.
You are all alone with just your thoughts. A pen, and a paper, trying to make sense of the loneliness. You hope someone will understand but knowing no one ever will.
It’s a very lonely place to be. In a room by yourself, writing about loneliness. The words on a page holding you together granted you should crumble if you don’t let it flow from the ink.
Yes, it’s very lonely. Very quiet indeed.
Words not like music are silent, unassuming, and not demanding. Gentle almost. The silence is deafening. If not for the sound of your breathing and the slide of the pen, you would almost think you were dead.
Alone and dead with only a pen and page as your companion.
Only the brave ones know where writing truly stems from and where it takes you The places in your mind and imagination that you thought you had forgotten. The memories you never knew you had. The dreams you never dared speak of.
It’s a road not travelled at all. A sad and painful place where the rivers are made out of tears. Very lonely. Very heartbreaking.
It was fun to be a part of this project. I recall, when the Whatsapp group opened, and all the discussions started flowing, I thought what a wonderful group of people who would come together and contribute to the idea of one person. I believe that is the foundation of Paper Trail.
An amazing group of writers is brought together with a variety of thoughts and ideas and it’s all mixed together in a melting pot of creativity.
I spent some time reading through the journal and it was really hard for me to choose which pieces were my favourite. When you read through it, it really highlights the importance of young people and the pivotal role that they play in society. It gives them a voice.
“Where there are challenges there is bounteous space for the cultural economy to flourish. All that is required is clarity of vision and openness”
On the Twitter page ofPaper Trail, the pinned tweet reads as follows:
“Our mission is to inspire young people through modern storytelling, and our vision is to create a digital journal that includes collaborators of all age groups to share poetry, short stories, articles and write-ups on young leaders and small businesses that improve our community.”
A TRAIL OF FAVOURITES
Like I mentioned before, there are so many facets and a variety of topics in this journal, that it makes it pleasantly difficult to choose which ones were my favourite. There are however some pieces that I would like to highlight.
“Back In The Day” by Shiara Sharanund. A learner at Westville Girls High school wrote a beautiful article that makes you reflect on the days past and how they made you feel. It sums up the idea of nostalgia stunningly. Below is a piece from her article.
There is also a sweet little piece from a Grade 4 learner at R.A Engar Primary school. This piece made me feel a bit sad but also put a smile on my face. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, we have forgotten that the little ones have also gone through some major changes but they have adapted so well.
The following quote is from a piece written by Shika Budhoo from her column titled “Align and Shine”
“Be the producer / radio DJ of your own mind and make sure the thoughts you think stay focused on your blessings and goals.”
Shika’s column gives you easy and practical tips on how to change the frequency of your thoughts from negative to positive and I think we can all do with a bit more positivity.
Another important piece that I would like to highlight is “How To Take Care Of You and Your Mental Health” by Robin Cleote. This piece speaks to all of us and after everything we’ve been through, it’s definitely worth the read.
KOFFEE FOR THE SOUL
I also contributed to the journal and I truly feel honoured that I could do that. I shared a space with amazing writers and if you haven’t heard of them before, you surely will now. Paper Trail brings communities together from across the world through the power of words. It reminds me of my review on Letting In The Light. Another body of work that simply reminds you about the beauty of words and shared experiences.
When I thought about the column that I wanted to contribute to Paper Trail, I wanted to write something honest and something that anyone could relate to. I didn’t want to give advice, I simply wanted to reflect and that’s the brief I proposed to the founder and editor, Ekta Somera.
The name “Koffee For The Soul” was inspired by how when we drink a warm beverage, its comforting and relaxes us and that is the experience I wanted to give the reader.
There is a little bit of wisdom in every piece that has been added to this journal. I am amazed at the array of writers and their contributions.
Paper Trail brings together a range of articles for every kind of reader. From recipes, poetry, history, fashion, and makeup to anime and so much more. There is truly something for everyone.
It is not just an enjoyable read but is also a learning experience.
Well done to everyone involved and to Ekta Somera for the idea of starting this journal.
I have to admit, it took me a while to really sit down and read this book. I think mostly because of the subject of the book; mental wellness or if you like mental health. It shouldn’t be surprising that so many of us suffer with some form of mental terror; depression, anxiety and sometimes we deal with feelings, thoughts and situations that can’t be described. When I started readingLetting In The Light; I felt a sense of coming home, a feeling of being welcomed into someone’s heart with open arms.
The foreword by Pick Me Up Poetryfounder, Webster Chagonda encompasses this feeling so well;
“Remember, darkness will always make way for the day, and wherever your mind may lead you, I hope these poems become your place of refuge.”
It’s difficult for me to tell which one of the poems are my favourite; there are pieces of each poem that speak directly to me.
They are all relatable and also somewhat confrontational but quite necessary,
“A fleeting moment of peace
as you cease to wonder when the next red drought will dry out this puddle
And if you won’t have drowned in the depth of your head until then”
When I read through the poems, I realised that so many people understand the feelings and circumstances around one topic. I felt safe reading it and saying to myself, “It’s okay to feel this way”
It truly is a stunning body of work with a beautiful use of words, descriptive methods and metaphors. It is almost as if what you’re reading is being carved on your skin. That is how deep the words go.
“Everywhere you walk, you will be a constellation of footsteps”
The anthology sheds light on all the parts of your life that is affected by depression; your mind, body, soul, family, friends and your career an daily life.
“I am ready to recite myself into existence. I am ready to tell anxiety a prophecy even though I sometimes don’t believe”
I want to encourage you to get this book. The words will speak to us all differently and once you get into it, you’ll realise its not just a book you can read once off. You can always go back and remind yourself that you are not alone in your darkness when you feel overwhelmed.
“I was bound by the plight of life and could not get away. I was blinded by the pain of this fight and could not see my way but I heard Hope’s gentle whistle and Joy’s hearty squeal, gently fanning the embers of my heart”
Well done to all the poets who contributed their words, feelings and experiences to this book. Thank you for being brave and baring it all on the pages.
Congratulations to the publishers, Chasing Dreams Publishing and everyone who worked to put this amazing body of work together.