that the next time i gaze into the mirror
i will not avert my eyes
i will examine every flaw
and i will remember
the path i took to get here
for the scars
both inside and out
they show my struggles
they are a road map to my destination
and they shall not be forgotten
for they show where i went wrong
and i refuse to struggle again
so i vow
that when i see myself
complete with all my flaws
i will stare back
for this is my body
and this is who i am
and i cannot change that
will not change that
You login to Prose to return to your old self. Instead of just free associating, you decide to respond to a writing prompt that asks you to write vows to yourself. You think it’s interesting and creative. Click.
The page before you is a mostly blank screen. There’s a textbox that says “Title”, and a bigger text box under it that says, “Write”.
The cursor blinks. You blink back. When did this get so hard?
Pause. Commercial Break.
You went to take out the dog and completely lost your thoughts. You sit and stare at the screen once again, that damn cursor taunting you.
“You think you’re a writer, huh? Poser.”
“I am. I am a published writer, and I need to remind myself of that.”
“You need to keep yourself accountable. If you don’t correct yourself, who will? You need to stay on top of your performance. Work towards perfection.”
“I know I’m not perfect, and I know my writing will never be; so why do I strive for perfection? I hate making mistakes. I was taught that there’s no time or money to make mistakes; no matter what the situation.”
“There it is-vow to allow yourself to make mistakes.”
It became hard to write because you were fulfilling a vow you made yourself a long time ago; to protect yourself. Writing leaves you vulnerable, so you ran away for a bit and surrounded yourself with walls. Instead of protecting you, they isolated you. They took away your confidence. Instead of comforting you, they held you back.
Despite your lack of confidence, you realize that you have been working on treating yourself better. Instead of surrendering to the taunting, you counter it.
So, Miggie, here it is; I vow to let you make mistakes; to let you be vulnerable; and to allow you to write with honesty and passion.
No Promises Except This One
I vow to stop promising things to myself
I never keep those promises so I never stop making mistakes
I vow to stop promising things to myself.
I vow to be honest to myself
I know myself better than anyone else.
Which doesn't bode well for anyone else because I don't know myself very well.
But I do know promises to myself always end in smoke and failure.
I start my promise tomorrow and I'll keep it till I don't want to.
I have here some intense intents,
an ode that I am owed;
so here I write about what's right,
a piece to bring me peace.
I vow to sieze the seven seas;
this bard will not be barred.
I do assent to this ascent;
through sun and rain I'll reign.
My words will raise the dawn's first rays,
the pane absorbs her pain.
She'll hear what I create down here;
real rhymes will make her reel.
The storms will throw me in their throes;
their fare is hardly fair-
but this coward won't be cowered.
Now, hear this: I'm still here!
And if I reel, I'll keep it real;
I will not mourn the morn.
I will push through the daze most days;
I won't be weak all week.
There may be sighs about the size
of each new sea I see-
but if I ail, I'll swig some ale;
doubt frays with each new phrase.
Now, I would give my fav'rite eye-
you gods please heed my pleas-
these claws must unearth ev'ry clause;
I can't bide paws that pause.
I'll be crowned prince of story prints
with tales of roguish tails;
an idol that won't sit idle-
the balm after the bomb.
Lines, on the occasion of failing to write something profound and then also failing to sleep at a reasonable hour because I decided to vent
I sat and wrote a vow of death,
And facing loss, and drawing breath.
“I know,” I said,
“We all get dead.”
I claimed I would prepare for Lethe.
And there I go again, you see,
So erudite and scholarly,
And so verbose
I’d ne’er approach
A decent line of poetry.
Two oh one nine, two oh one nine,
Antique allusions in my lines?
I must face it:
“Lethe” is shit.
Alluding Greek? I'm infantine.
Prufrock had it right, you know.
Not Lazarus – a basic schmoe.
And I accord.
My self-important babble blows.
I’m thirty-six, good health, and yet
I would presume to write of death?
Just stop. I’m in
A china shop,
An elephant on crystal meth.
No more “high sentence,” that’s my vow.
Speak simple truths, the here, the now.
“Sage” ill becomes
A guy so young.
No magic beans; I’ll keep the cow.
A prof said once, “I know I gave
A thought beyond you, of the grave.
You’re all too green
To catch my lean,
You’re years away, you sprightly knaves.”
“I know we’re young, but we’re not fools!”
I cried, “And we all know the rules!
We think of death
And time that’s left
Unwinding still from all our spools.”
“Jesus,” he said, “I hope not.”
The Past Self
The selfishness and ignorance of inexperience
At living in a universe of individuals
Does mutilate my memories of juvinility.
Maturity of consciousness breeds humiliation
Of reactions and responses, and in retrospection,
One ambition keeps repressing the demoralizing:
To vow to keep moving forward.
Until Death Do Us Part.
I, Kaytrine, accept myself to be my companion in the journey of life.
I promise to allow myself to learn with time.
I will not be my own bully,
and drown myself in my mistakes.
Instead, I will be my own supporter,
and lift myself in my victories.
I promise to love my body.
I will adore the vessel given to me,
maintain its parts,
and drive it with great care.
I promise to nurture those who love my soul.
I will respect the souls that my heart adores,
and admire those that my heart finds worthy.
I promise to always be changing.
I will never stick to the same river,
I will never be one state,
I will always shift forms.
I promise to keep moving.
My feet will not be idle,
My thoughts will not be stagnant,
My soul will always run.
I, Kaytrine, allow myself to live life.
As painful as it may be,
As beautiful as it may seem.
Until death do my body and my soul part.