Poetry is a voice I did not know I had until I spoke. It is eyes I did not know I could open until I did. Poetry filters the bleakness of existence with flashes of life.

Poetry is a way of living.

Poetry is the child of philosophy and aesthetic. Poetry is an alchemical axiom: One in the Universe; the Universe in One. I’ve witnessed common experiences — such as getting a haircut from a barber — become exquisite gestures of culture, loyalty and pride. Poetry exposes the craftsmanship of the everyday.

Poetry wakes me from my reverie; poetry lulls me back to sleep. Poetry is in my thoughts. Poetry is my worldview; I see life through poetry-tinted glasses.

Poetry is a love deeper than meaning; a love deeper than love. Poetry is a deity more omnipotent than religion.

Poetry is art’s strictest but wisest teacher. You’ll learn all there is about exploring mysteries and the unknown, if you heed poetry’s lessons.

Most of all, poetry is my friend, my confidant and companion. And poetry connects me to fellow travelers journeying on different branches, parallel to each other, of the same path. I can see them across time and space, and I wave at them. Sometimes they wave back. Even if they don’t, simply knowing that I am not alone is comforting.

All this — and more — is what poetry means to me.