The Definition of Life

I was browsing a book of poems I wrote in high school and the title of one caught my eye. I decided to write a new poem based solely on the title and compare what ideas were conveyed. I thought it would be great to see how much changed in my writing both ideally and stylistically over the course of 10 (yes 10!) years. 

The Definition of Life (pt 2)

May 5, 2014

I see the world with my own eyes
and oft forget my eyes cannot see
The shades and hues of colors here
Glow differently from you to me--
And as they take flight in gentle winds,
Disappear from us our separate thoughts,
For an instant I see the shadow of life
Hiding invisibly between contrasting visions
Ducking beneath waterfalls of sorrow,
Riding waves of anger and frustration...
A little imp, hiding casual in the light of day
Unable to be caught by my own eyes.
The shadow settles and fades away
Into the sun light, the mists of what was
Some that may or may not come to be
His shadow lingers in my sight
As I try to carve form and shape.
Life dances its visions away from us
Leaves us debating the colors we see:
Blissful blue and raucous red intwining,
Two parts of the same whole, dividing
A distraction from the shadow of life
Of the shadow we were meant to see

The Definition of Life (pt 1)

June 30, 2004

Like rain pounding
Ever so forcefully
On my window
My roof, my porch;
I drown in life's flood.
It's waves
Crashing over me
But like the withering rose
I rise in life's shower,
Soaking up ever drop
Every crystal
Of life's stream.
Because life is overwhelming,
Yet peaceful all the same

Like tears
Spilling from the soul,
From the eyes of innocence;
I feel a burden of life's sorrow
I tugs at my heart
And clings to my mind.
Yet like the tears
Of joyous cries
Springing out from happiness
I am comforted
Because sadness
Is merely a state
Of happiness
And life was built
Between the two.

Like my heart
Breaking under pressure,
Torn from corner to corner;
I know anger--
the gate to hatred.
But like my heart,
Warmed by gentle pressure,
I love first
Because hate
Is the betrayal of love
And life comes from both.

Life --
Neither good nor bad
Neither lovely nor hateful;
But a sweet,
Rigid combination
Of all that is.

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