Monday, April 10, 2017

The Good Poem For Burning

First, you let them tear you up, until they can’t read the words on what’s left of you.

Whatever you do, don’t let them cry, they’ll just make the ink run.

Then, crumple yourself up and light the match for them.

Then become smoke and ash, and fly far away from here.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Questions That Make You Feel Weak

I want to know if you know who you are.

I want to know if you know you’re pretending to be who you are.

I want to know where you buried your heart and if it was easy.

But asking questions makes me feel weak, and the only way I get to be strong right now, is to not say anything at all.

I want you to give me a reason for all this that makes sense.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

The Seasons After Winter

I think you want to say, “You might fall in love, is that the worst thing that could happen?”

And I want to ask you if you've ever noticed the way Christmas lights reflected in a window at night look like stars exploding.

And I want to ask you if you had a garden growing up.

I want to ask you if you had to listen to one thing forever, what would it be.

And I think I want you to say, “A river. Why are we hiding what’s happening here?”

And I think I want to say, "Falling in love is not the worst thing that could happen."

But I don’t know.

Because when you’ve been waiting for someone else for so long, you can become a stranger even to yourself.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Burning Of Snow

Tell me again, the story of all the things I cannot do, so I can tell you the story of how I will do them.

Monday, March 27, 2017

The Heart Of The Night


All I want to know is why I never wake up in the middle of the night thinking about someone who loves me.
I ask and nothing in the night answers me.

Monday, March 20, 2017

The 10000 Ton Grave

"What I'm saying is I don't want you hurting somewhere when you least expect it. I don't want you ordering coffee and waiting and suddenly feeling sad and lonely out of nowhere. That's why I'm saying we should bury them deep, these people that we were and the things that we had, and far away from each other. I don't want them finding each other again, in the ground beneath us. I don't want you to hurt again and I don't want to hurt either and as near as I can tell, that's all we can do for each other."

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Cold End Of All Things

"Even if you've forgotten who you are, you could at least try to remember what you mean, and who you mean it to."

"I think I've forgotten both who I am and what I mean. And why should I care? Why should any of us mean anything."

"You're just talking now. You do not have to talk if you don't want to.

"What is left to talk about? These are our lives and they have both begun and begun to end."

Monday, March 6, 2017

The World We Live In

What if there are no bad worlds or good worlds.
What if there’s just the world you and I live in.
What if everything isn't fixed in stone.
What if everything's like a river that meets other rivers and they become each other.

What if we still have a chance to make this a good world.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Canvas Prints

You can now get what is probably my most famous poem as a canvas print to hang in your home - click here or on the picture.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Love Like A House Collapsing

Below the rubble, I am still trapped next to you.
Below the rubble, I can only move my fingers.
Below the rubble, I am dust in sunlight.
Below the rubble, rocks crush my chest.
Below the rubble, I remember when we could hold on.
Below the rubble, our fingers touch.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Words You Could Say

If you can do nothing else, tell the truth.

Say, “I don’t know who I was before now, and I don’t know who I’ll be tomorrow.”

Say, "There are things about me you'll never fix, and it's not your job to fix me."

Say, "I feel things I don't know how to feel."

Say, "We can be anything but we can't be everything."

Say, “I can do nothing else, this is me and this is all there is.”

If anyone stays with you

after you’ve told them that

stay with them

as long as they’ll have you.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Things That Might Happen To Us

I don’t understand how you can be so worried about what might happen, when what might not happen, is so much worse.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Edge Of You

We got mixed up in the making of us. Before the first sunrise, your wrists were my wrists, you looked through my eyes and I heard through your ears. I felt what you felt. Wherever I am, I know now, some part of you is a part of me too.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Tempering Of Hearts

You do not make love strong by resting on it.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

The Start Of Stupid Stories

I believe that if you’re good, more good things happen to you.

I believe it rains to let you know you’re lucky.

I believe that you only get old if you let yourself.

I believe in trying your best and forgetting who you are as often as possible.

I believe that there’s a way to love someone like we thought we could love when we were young.

I believe there’s a way to love like a story book.

I believe in stupid things.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

The Race To The Bottom

Ultimately, people want to convince you that you’re actually racing them, because they’re racing you and if they feel like you’re not racing them back, well that’s as bad as being ignored.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Best Of Us

I whisper because some part of me wants you to whisper too.

Because I want you to tell me secrets.

Because our secrets are the best parts of us.

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Gods Tremble Before Quiet Strength

I know you best when you are flowers in the barrels of rifles. 

I know you best when you are brave.  

I know you when your strength comes from your compassion and when your greatest fear, is that you have not been compassionate enough. 

I know you when you look at others not as others but as people you might have been, as people your parents might have been, as people your children might still be. 

I know you and I see you when you stand up. 

I know you and I see you when they tell you to be afraid, to hate, to go away from the world, to go away from each other. I know you and I see you when they scream storms at you, when they bury you beneath mountains, when they drown you in oceans, when they push you under and yet still you whisper from the deepest part of you: 

“No.” 

 And when you do, I look at you and I say, “There you are. 

I know you."

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

The Strangers In Waiting


Everyone talks about love at first sight but not once has some well-meaning soul turned to me and said,

“Do you know how many years it takes to become strangers again?”

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Nature Of Hands

Remember: When you touch someone's hand and their hand feels cold, your hand feels warm to them.

Don’t be afraid to hold cold hands.

Monday, January 16, 2017

The Middle Of The Bridge

I didn’t ask you here so you could like me.

I asked you here so that someone would know who I was.

Friday, January 13, 2017

The Unsureness Of Being

“Say it again but sound sure.”

But how do I tell you that I’m not sure.

That I’ve never been sure of anything. Ever. In my whole life.

I can’t say that.

So I say what I just said. Just louder.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Shape In The Mirror

Do you remember when I was good at missing you?

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Parts We Keep

Don’t let them kill the parts of you that they don’t like.

Keep all of you.

Never be afraid to be everything you are.

Monday, January 9, 2017

The Lost And Unfound

I said, “I hope you find who you’re looking for.”

I said, “I hope you find someone to hold your heart.”

Even though I thought I was the one you were looking for.

Even though I thought I could hold your heart.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Differences Between You


You don’t know me but I play you in the mirror.

And every photograph you don’t like.

I’m also your voice on recordings,
when you don’t like the sound of your own voice.

I look like you but
I’m a little bit bigger
and I move a little slower

It takes me longer to think of the clever thing to say
when everyone is saying clever things.

I look dumber than you.

My hands are clumsy and so are my feet.

For every imperfection you have,
I have two more.

Nothing of yours fits me.

I’m only telling you all this because

sometimes

you look at me
and seem to think
you’re me.

- even with all these differences.

You still look at me
when you think we’re alone

and you cry.

Because you think you’re me.

But I’d never cry if you didn’t.

Because you’re not me.

Because we couldn’t be more different if we tried.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Goodbye 2016

Dear You,

I did not plan to send this message so late but perhaps it’s all for the best, perhaps you need a message after all the other messages have been sent. Thank you for this year. Thank you for choosing to spend your time with the things I write. Every single day, I do my best to deserve that honour.

This year has been hard, as has been repeated so many times but every year will be hard in its own way. It’s just a number on a clock or a date on a calendar, nothing that means anything beyond what we make it. We all have to carry on and as you well know, some seconds can last for years and some years disappear before your eyes.

My daughter was born this year and that has made everything worthwhile. A few days ago, I lay in a hammock and she sat on my chest and pulled at my shirt and God owed me nothing at all.

Her favourite jokes are: Fake sneezing and an object that is far away suddenly becoming closer. She has a laugh like coins in a wishing well.

Some moments are perfect and you know you’ll remember them forever. I hope this year that you have too many of those moments to count. I hope you surprise yourself by how strong and amazing and talented you are. I also hope you surprise yourself by how forgiving you are of yourself, when you don’t live up to your own expectations. Nothing matters but the things you make matter. So please choose what matters carefully.

We will be releasing something special this year, to mark the 10 year anniversary of I Wrote This For You.

I send you the best of me,

Me