Poetry and Madness

I am a writer of many notebooks. I have 2 1/2 books filled with memories of the past 7 years; countless more pages hold a haphazard collection of short stories, songs, and scenes of plays that will never be seen. One book in particular often sits forgotten among many others. Unlike the others, this one is nearly empty. The few pages that aren’t empty contain poetry; not a forced, clean-cut type of poetry… but instead the kind of poetry that can only come from feeling too much after spending a lot of time in a daze.

I’ve never been much of a poet. My “poetry” is more like word vomit after being up too long and thinking too much. Instead of quieting my brain, every rediscovery of this book and its contents makes my head spin. I don’t know how to feel about it.

Today, I found the book. I read the book. One poem gave me quite the headache. I wrote it sometime in the 6 months following my 18th birthday… I call it “Lost”:


I am lost. No longer in the comfort of knowing.

I sit here. Waiting for Your voice to break through the quiet.

But there is only silence

I need You, But I’m terrified of where You may take me.

So here I wait. Please give me faith.

Please give me strength

All I hear is silence

Please help me pursue You the way You pursue me

Help me overcome my unbelief.


In a way, I’m still very much the same person who wrote that. But where my 18-year-old self was still thrashing in the waters of a life brought up in religion, I’m currently learning that sometimes you have to let it go. Maybe I’m running from God. Maybe there is no God. Whatever the answer, I need to figure it out for myself.

Maybe I’m simply descending into madness…. But is it really possible to find yourself if you don’t lose yourself first?


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