Saturday, August 21, 2010

Conflict Within (Revisited)

"Write your first draft with your heart. Re-write with your head."-William Forrester, From the movie "Finding Forrester"

Four years ago I wrote a poem to what I felt was the best poem I've ever written, and that feeling still stands today. I was never as open and honest about anything in my life at that time I was writing it. You can actually read it here in a blog post I wrote back in March called Blast From The Past. I was actually considering taking the exact same poem and entering it into a poetry contest or two just to give me a confidence boost because I've actually been doubting myself as of lately and have been in a writing funk which in turn put me in a funk. I didn't have to win, although it would be nice, but just to say "I did it and I believed this was good enough to submit" was all I needed. Okay I'm lying, I wanted to at least place in the top 10. Just being honest, but I digress.

I go back and read the poem which is entitled Conflict Within and something was wrong. Actually it was all wrong. I ended up hating it. I couldn't believe I actually thought it was good. Then I realized something else. My self-proclaimed greatest poem was shit. A big steaming pile of jumbled, confused, shit. It was as if someone took a ball of yarn and tied an infinite number of knots in it and told you to untie them. Just all over the place, despite it being written in the free verse format it was STILL a mess. It had no prose whatsoever. Now that really put a damper on my self-esteem. Maybe it's because I am a different writer than I was 4 years ago but I saw a lot of immaturity and confusion in that piece. I didn't know what to do. How can I make something that I once felt was the best I ever done, better? Well that's just that. I go and make it better.

Over the course of the past 3 days I had conversations with friends that made me think to myself and read a few quotes that made me nod my head in agreement but I just kept it moving along. Then the other day it hit me like Brennan Huff swung a pillowcase filled with bars of soap that all these "random" events in the past three days actually formed as a whole and I finally begun to understand. I can't explain it into words exactly because that's just too much. But what I did after I had this grand epiphany was I broke "Conflict Within" out and sent it to who I call "my muse" and asked them to read it for me and give their honest opinion. I asked "my muse" to do this because they don't hold back and are very honest with me at all times. They came back and broke it down for me and gave me the answer I needed to hear, "It lacked a flow and it was a bit of a challenge to follow." The truth. I needed someone to see what I was seeing that had a trained eye for these kind of things. This poem wasn't for leisure at this point, this was going to go up against other writers in a judging contest. It needed structure. And I'm hoping that's what I did. The quote I posted at the beginning is what I read this morning as I was JUST finishing up revising "Conflict Within". That is what really made me realize this was needed. To use another quote, "It is finding truth that gives us proper despair so that you don't become conceited." And without further ado here it is, the new and revised (not saying it's BETTER), Conflict Within. Enjoy. I hope.

Conflict Within

Too many reasons why I should keep going
But too many reasons why I should stop
Which one is it
The outcome will be so blissful if I keep giving my all
Is it just my imagination
That's causing me to give in to the temptation
They are everywhere
There is no use to fight them

A feeling such as that
Can't be obtained within by any force
Letting your guard down for a second
Reveals your weaknesses
I should just give up
Why am I still going for this feeling
That isn't there in the first place
Maybe I'm not digging hard enough
There's too much potential flowing within this body of mine
Waiting to explode

It's happened before
Giving into my potential
I release only a small portion and they run
They fear me
They all do
They don't understand nor care to try
But I wonder still
Is it you
I've sensed it before and I will again

I have to tap within and show the one
The potential, the source, the feeling that is above all
If you is there
And has been sensed where are they
In the same place as I
They have to be found
You only shows themselves when they are forgotten
And one stands alone above them with you

Show yourself
It's not time I have to find me as do you
And when we rejoice
The conflict within will cease
And you and I will be above them
And they will be extingushed
Like a fire being doused by oceans of water
From the heavens that will never cease
Because we are together for all time
Constantly intertwining

But until then
I know
You doesn't exist
So they will reign within me
Until I am overthrown
Not by you
But by myself within
The key to finding you
Has always been within me

Chauncey B.

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