The Black Veil – A Poem

5150943940_b94fffd722_bThe Black Veil – A Poem

I wear this black veil of despair
Like the wrappings of a mummy,
Covering my self-inflicted wounds.

My face frozen in cold, blank stare
Trapped within my tomb,
Alone in my room.

Why do you continue to test me?
Why do you hold out savory meat
Only to snatch it from my hands?

It is wrong for me to question your authority,
To question the good of your plans,
To hold you in contempt, unable to understand?

I wear this lonely shroud of betrayal.
Spend my days wondering
Why is it I who should be denied?

Haven’t I sought to be faithful?
Why are the wicked given an easy ride,
Never facing near the trials you’ve thrown in my life?

Is it too much to ask
For an outlet to this love,
Just to have a companion by my side?

Each time the die is cast
Comes another lashing to my pride,
Another time where I’d discarded and thrown aside.

Why is it that romantic lovers
Are often the ones alone,
While cheaters, liars, thieves, and betrayers come home to open arms?

But though anger stirs, I’ll patiently wait to discover
Why you seem set on placing me in the midst of harm,
Why alone is always where you think I belong.

I wear this black veil of despair,
But I trust that you know more
Than what sits before my somber scene.

I guess that life is not always fair,
So be my rock upon which I lean
As I wait in solitude until you send to me my queen.

-Poem by Justin Farley


 

photo credit: Dream is Just A Dream via photopin (license)

The Sailor – A Poem

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The Sailor – A Poem

You’ve sent me off as an aimless navigator
Traveling upon treacherous and torrential seas.
Once was a proud and confident sailor,
But now find there’s no compass I can read.

Needles spin with the wind and poles have no meaning
When they are altered by my heart’s magnetic field.
And upon this ship it’s no easy sailing
With a split and swollen keel.

These waves that come rolling in
Only reaffirm and remind me of what rolled out with the tide.
Everyday the heat beats down on scorched, sunburnt skin
And drifting upon the open sea there’s nowhere to hide.

I do not accept my demise
And have not given up casting out my nets.
But I can’t help hungering for my past prize
When salty, quenchless water is all I seem to catch.

At least if I was shipwrecked
There’d be land where I could lay my head to rest,
But as it is I have trekked
Across endless waves and seen nothing but deep, blue nothingness.

You sent me off as an aimless navigator,
Charting waters without a course.
There are no maps for the heart-broken sailor
When the only land I know how to seek is yours.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley


 

photo credit: nice sea waves 2 via photopin (license)

One Day At A Time – A Poem

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One Day At A Time – A Poem

The cool breeze of fall
Grips me in a trance,
Lost in a dance that I wish
I could take part in.
But these feet waltz alone
And these fingers intertwine with no one,
Holding nothing but empty space.
It’s just me beneath an October moon,
Admiring the stars swimming in the majestic
Sea of black.
I could turn back,
But I’ve walked too far,
And the reward is too great
Despite the pain of it all.
But did it have to be now you chose to stall?
Don’t you know my favorite season is fall –
The time my childlike spirit thrives and comes alive
Prancing and dancing through the forest fires that blaze
In shades of reds, purples, yellows, and oranges upon the trees?
I looked forward to the magic
That hangs upon the leaves,
Dreamt of kissing you in the cool autumn nights
Snuggling against each other’s sleeves.
But those dreams will have to wait.
For now my desires must be put on hold.
It is your sweet soul that must me looked after
Because I long more than anything to hear you delight in laughter,
To be released from the shackles of your painful memories,
And to rewrite a new ending to your story.
You are teaching me how to love one day at a time,
How to surrender to another’s needs
And shed these wants of mine.
For that’s what love truly means –
To put another above yourself.
And in your eyes, by your side
I have all the wealth a man could ever need.
It is now the real, newly revealed you
That is sought after by this heart of mine.
So why do I need these feelings between us defined?
I’ll just begin to fall in love again
One day at a time.

photo credit: Sunset Over Rolling Tuscan Hills Villa Vineyard via photopin (license)

The Trouble With Love – A Poem

The Trouble With Love – A Poem

Why do I continually let people into my fragile heart
Who have no business being there?
Why do I continue to trust in the promise of love
When it only breeds deep wounds of despair?

“I Love You’s” are thrown around like hellos,
Promises given without the trace of honest intention.
My soul breaks and quakes in mournful bellows
Because of thoughtless decisions.

Can’t I ever find someone who is honest and true?
Can’t I ever find eyes that don’t lie –
Eyes that echo joy and laughter
But have secrets and deceit they sleep behind?

Is it really that hard to accept love
And not continually push against it and fight?
You can continue to play tug-of-war with your heart,
But you’re done playing it with mine.

Soul suckers sit out in the darkness
And wait for a decent man
That they can feast upon and sink their vicious claws into,
Clutching honest, beating hearts in their hands.

I guess they get off on causing chaos,
Casting their spells upon warm, caring hearts.
Then, when they’re done with their feast
They simply spit them back up and tear them apart.

Cower in your corners you tainted and jaded,
You frightened, gutless little girls.
If you can’t look love in the face,
Stay the hell out of men’s worlds.

Stay in your delusions. Remain in the past,
Bitching about what Daddy didn’t do for you.
It’s about time you moved on and grew up,
The only excuse you have now is you.

The trouble with love is we live in a world
Full of confused, soulless creatures,
Who never give a damn about anyone but themselves,
Who hide behind exhausted excuses,
Love to hitch a ride upon a caring back,
But have no intention of sticking around for the journey.

The trouble with love is that you first have to find someone
Who’s not simply out to break hearts and get off on playing games.
And in our world, selfishness reigns,
And worthy hearts dwindle everyday.

So where are you, love?
I thought I knew you
But you turned out to be just another
Coward and liar.
Love, I’m done chasing you.
You can come find me when your games are through,
Until then I’m smothering your fire.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley

One Is Never Enough, Ten Will Never Do – A Poem About Addiction

a man who  is ashamed, lonely, and depressedHaving suffered through the bonds of addiction, I sought in this poem to somehow put into perspective what the transformation of an addict is like. It never starts off as tragedy, but as a solution to all life’s problems – the missing puzzle piece that we’ve been searching for all of our life to make us fit. And nothing is better than discovering the magic of our elixir or drug of choice because it’s never about the experience. It is about healing the mangled, broken human being we’ve been carrying around inside our chest our whole life.

We rejoice. We celebrate. We can’t get enough. Finally, we are free. Finally, we have something that makes our darkness and fears disappear. But somewhere along the way, we cross a line. I don’t think any addict can truly know what day or time that line was crossed. But when we cross it, our enchanted dream becomes a bone-chilling nightmare. A sickness so swift comes over us that we fail to diagnose ourselves (unfortunately some never do). There is no romanticism in the depths of addiction. It is the coldest hell that man can ever go through.

There is often much confusion and anger towards loved ones who have addiction issues. That anger and frustration is not invalid. But for the addict, it is not some trip to Disneyland, but a ride down avenues that few can bear. It is the process of the soul shattering, and when the soul shatters, chaos is bound to follow. We are responsible for our actions, but the active addict is enduring a world that you can never begin to comprehend. We are not bad humans. We are sick, broken, mad, and in need of restoration. Love requires truth and confrontation. It cannot sit back and watch, while it’s lover is dying. It demands to be heard and to fight against the chaos. But love is the most powerful weapon against addiction. It takes someone else to believe you can fight back because often times an addict doesn’t have anything left to believe in. You don’t have to understand; you never will. But stretching out a hand to someone sinking is sometimes all it takes if they are willing to grab on. Blame, shame, and anger never do an addict any good. Trust me, we’ve got enough of that in our own heart to fill the world. We hate ourselves and what we’ve doing more than you can ever know. But we are frightened. We are scared. We do not know how to live in our own skin – fragile, broken, and utterly mangled. It is not deviance that drives one to addiction; it is deliverance. Deliverance from a world of hurt and pain. These hearts are already broken enough. Please do not break them even more. Restore them. Cherish them. Breathe your life back into them. Give them hope for a better tomorrow because their today is a living hell.

One Is Never Enough, Ten Will Never Do – A Poem About Addiction

One taste was all it took to love you.
You coddle me in your sweet embrace
And rock my fears and insecurities to sleep,
Nestled within your powerful arms.
But your enchanted dreams do not rub away from my eyes,
And I find it impossible to say good-bye to our nightly rendezvous.

I am drowning in your love,
But still thirsty.
Still yearning for just one more,
But somehow I know that will never do –
My every thought is of you
And the magic that your cast upon my broken mind.
You fix me and as long as you’re by my side,
The world is fine.
My strides are long and steady.
I’m cool, calm, confident, and ready
To take on the world with my head held high and my eyes
Ready to look life in the face.

But without the transformation I undergo after your taste,
I am lost, weak, scared, and incompetent.
My eyes drag across the floor
And fear commands my every move.
No.
One more will never do.
I need every ounce of you
Rattling through my veins, breaking these chains
That bind me in isolation.

But love, things were going so well.
What is this desolation
That now flows from your well?
Your spell has enchanted me blind
And numb to life.
What started off as waves of calm
Have turned to tides of chaos,
Screaming, shrieking out in piercing alarms.

I am not well.
No. My being is fluttering away in the breeze,
And a new form – some deformed demon
Forces me to my knees.
I only wanted one.
But one was not enough.
Neither was two.
Or the ten that followed two.

I no longer desire to be kissed.
My mind insists that I must be swallowed
Up in your madness, in the sadness
Of this depraved love affair that has turned sour.
I do not know the hour
That I turned from lover to slave.
But I look through blurred, sunken eyes at my reflection
And never have been so afraid.

I am no longer me.
I am not my own.
And who can comprehend the clamor of this confinement?
None. I walk alone
Through the dark corridors –
I reside within the empty walls.
I am an inmate on death row,
Silently drinking my way towards my execution date,
And my executioner will not wait, nor hear my plea.
I shiver in the silence of my cold seduction.
Oh, how I long to break free!
From this madness, this chaos, this never-ending itch
That I can’t stop scratching,
My claws ripping away the flesh of a once decent man.
But he is far gone from me, a monster is what I am.

I don’t want you.
But I need you.
No longer for safety, but to survive.
My love, I am a stumbling corpse,
Barely breathing, barely alive.
Realization reeks like a rotten carcass,
Festering, decaying in swarming summer heat,
Waves of repugnance sweeping me off my feet.

For truth stings sharper than a thousand bees.
Truth, heavier than the weight of the world,
When reality knocks an addict to his knees.
Oh, my sweet friend…
I thought your love was true!
But now I know one is never enough,
And ten will never do.

– Poem Written by Justin Farley


photo credit: into the blue via photopin (license)

Coming of Age – A Poem About Growing Up

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Coming of Age – A Poem About Growing Up

I walk alone down the streets of time,
Constantly searching, yearning for a home I can call mine.
But the migrant bustle, hustle through the downtown streets
Makes it nearly impossible, a distant and unattainable feat.
Who are these faces that stare back at me?
Why do they appear so alive, and I so empty?
Is it that I am merely conscious of the severity of life’s sting,
Or have they somehow found their way out of winter and into the arms of spring?
I find it quite confusing, amusing really that they walk without care,
And I like Sisyphus walking up a hill with a stone I’m unable to bear.
Are the bonds of madness merely my sole curse?
Am I the only one constantly searching for an eternal hearth?
Conformity seems unobtainable, office mingling out of my grasp.
But they seem to show up day after day with only a sigh and a laugh.
Yet, I seem trapped, walking free yet still wandering down death row
Like a rose planted upon pavement, unable to grow.
What is this depth of despair that crushes my hope for tomorrow,
Not fully submerged in depression, but surely wallowing in sorrow?
A fading memory still remains tucked away in the back of my mind
Of childhood dreaming where the gears stood motionless upon the hands of time.
And now where do I run to without the magic of youth?
I simply spend my days wrestling with relativity, searching for eternal truth.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley

If you enjoyed this post, I would greatly appreciate it if you like, share, or comment on it. Follow my blog to receive notifications when new posts are published. You can find my other Christian poems, Lent poems, love poems or inspirational poems at https://alongthebarrenroad.com/category/poetry/

photo credit: 2009 01 20 – 0730 – Washington DC – Maine Ave under RR Bridge via photopin (license)

Dealing With Winter – Learning From Nature

2182376536_87a875701eThe temperatures are already putting me in a bad mood, and even though we’ve only had one snowfall, I’d say I’ve had about enough for the year. It is way too early to be already having blistering temperatures in the middle of November in Indiana. I do have a tendency to suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) in the winter – my depression/anxiety is always worse. The lack of light and inability to go outside much (unless you want to freeze) leaves me feeling restless and irritable. But this year I’m going to try my best to change my perspective and flow with nature, instead of against it.

As much as I dislike this time of year, it does remind us that even nature needs time to relax and rest. The forests are still and quiet, blanketed with beautiful snow, with all vegetation asleep until the coming spring. It is a great time for reflection – to be in solitude and think about our lives, our goals, and our destination. As human beings, we all tend to complain about how we never have the time to do anything and constantly feel like we never have time to take a break. But the time of year when nature tells us we can, we tend to ignore it and keep moving, wishing it were spring. You have permission to be still and quiet. If nature needs it, we do too. In our world, stillness is one of the hardest disciplines to practice. Is it any wonder people feel more stressed than ever before?

This year let’s not focus on how cold it is, how miserable the weather is, or count down the number of days until spring. Let’s be still and watch the example of nature – we might even learn a thing or two.


 

Photo Credit: ***Bud*** via Compfight cc