Bleeding Words

Captain Jay Ruffins, 17th Century Quills from Rufus King Manor museum in Jamaica, Queens shared under Creative Commons 4.0 Share Alike

Forgive the words that bleed out from this pen
For the ink that forms them is a torturous mixture
Of a wounded heart’s flow mixed with the saline
Of the river of tears which flow to the sea of grief
And the trembling hands which wield the implement
Shake as they attempt to record the wounds of the world
And like so much spilled blood it rushes like streams
To poison the wells of joy that once nourished

Perhaps like the prophets’ words later generations may see
That these harsh words were the fertilizer for some new growth
Where those who mourn may be comforted as the tears dry
And the poet’s heart is lovingly knit back together by time
Then perhaps the words will be the creative words of spring
But now those words are an unknown language strange to the ear
Words whose syllables have no meaning to the grieving soul
Who must drink of the putrid waters of their own well

For everything there is a time, a time to bleed and a time to heal
And I must speak the words of that bubble up from the well of the soul
Where the light of life seems a tremulous flame in the squall
Where the cold of winter penetrates into the marrow of the bones
And where the slow tick of the clock marks the passage of pain
While I wait for the pen to slowly run out of this tortured ink
For the rivers to dry up as the sun reemerges from its dormancy
Longing for the language whose sounds my tongue cannot form
Joyously drinking from the sweet waters of newly dug wells

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