Pulling the Thorns from my Heart

My inner child was lost
during the trials of adolescence.
My understanding of the world 
began anew.

Joy became a stranger, 
visiting sometimes but always vanishing soon after arriving. 
Happiness became a thing 
to find in others and never keep. 
Sadness became a friend — 
nothing else was so familiar. 
Anger became instinct, 
for the world no longer deserved my kindness. 
Fear became my shadow, 
growing and shrinking from constantly shifting perspectives but 
never leaving.

Adolescence passed, yet 
my inner child remained lost. 
Burgeoning adulthood had all but buried 
the fading memory of them. 
And the thorns that pierced my heart in adolescence 
buried themselves 
deep into the muscle tissue. 
But yesterday, I heard a small voice 
singing to me 
from the depths of my soul.

It said joy never leaves — 
it is simply overlooked. 
It said happiness can be found anywhere, and
my heart is the compass to guide me. 
It said sadness exaggerates, 
making itself the center of attention. 
It said anger is a poison, and 
kindness is the cure. 
It said fear is false, 
only appearing real.

Now, 
with the wisdom of that small voice,
I am slowly 
pulling the thorns from my heart.
And I hope
to hear the voice again soon.

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