Thursday, November 10, 2011

Poem #16--A Place Called Peace

A Place Called Peace

A dream is made of many parts,
Of hopes and smiles, of will and heart.
So when you dream, where do you start?
Desire is the key.

What do you want, what is your goal?
What is the drive within your soul?
Mine is one of joy untold.
I seek a place called peace.

      A place where skies are never gray,
Where raindrops dance, then fade away.
Cool breezes on warm summer days,
That do encompass all.

            This place is one where one can think
On ships of thought that never sink.
Where one can sit right on the brink
Of naught, and never fall.

Where one can be a prince, a king,
A maiden fair, or anything
That may achieve their fondest dreams
Without all pain and fright,

Where Friendship lasts and love abounds,
Where charming laughter doth resound,
Where flowers bloom from fertile ground
As all Earth bathes in light.

To reach this place has been my dream,
To settle by its soothing streams.
Though time has shown that, it would seem,
I shall never meet my goal.

But then I stop, and think again,
And realize how close I have been.
This Place called Peace is locked within,
Hidden inside my soul,

Where I can reach it any time,
And let it flood my troubled mind,
And share it with all of mankind
For I have found the key.

So now, when I am feeling down,
I quickly turn my life around.
For sorrow cannot here be found
In this lovely Place called Peace.

-Karl Southwick


This poem is a description of the pursuit of peace. To me, the ultimate achievement would be to obtain total peace--of mind, of heart, of soul. Peace is a goal, a dream, an ideal that can be the birthplace of true happiness. And it is hidden within each one of us. No matter how much turmoil might be in our lives, no matter how hectic or stressful our lives might be, there is always some measure of peace inside us. All we have to do is look, and we will find it.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Poem #15--Teach the Children

Teach the Children


There are those to whom we all attribute our success:
Our teachers, friends, and families, to name some of the best.
But oftentimes we overlook the ones that mattered most,
The ones who started us on the path should be recognized foremost.
The teachers of the little ones, of us while we were young,
Who, on the ladder of this life, helped us up the first rung.
These teachers never ceased to teach, e’en though we were too small
To understand all of God’s words, to comprehend them all.
Now, in life, we may not recall the lessons that they gave,
But their importance was utmost, a life-impacting wave.
The introduction to the children of God’s word and will,
Is perhaps the most important, and bears with us still.
A simple word, a kindly deed, teaching us to pray,
Our teachers in this innocent age made us who we are today.
So never forget your importance, my friend, for it is great indeed.
After all, our Savior and our Lord said “Bring them unto me.”
You have done all that and more, yes, that much is clear.
He is grateful you helped to save the children he holds dear.

-Karl Southwick

This is a thank you to all of my teachers from my past. Teachers of any kind, even if that wasn't their official job or calling. We are surrounded by teachers, who are more than willing to teach us, as long as we take the time to listen. So thank you to all of you who have taught me so much. Thank you. :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Poem #14--Listen

Listen

Friendship is a powerful thing, a special, helpful force.
It helps us, when we’re feeling lost, to find the rightful course.
So if there is one lesson now, that everyone should learn,
It is that friendship’s a two-way street; we must give it in return.
There are few things more important than being a great friend,
Helping one another to endure right to the end.
But sometimes, all our efforts seem to go on deafened ears.
Friends refuse to listen, and we are driven straight to tears.
Few things cause us sharper pain than good advice ignored,
So when a friend commits this crime, what good can lie in store?
Oftentimes we find ourselves in such a situation,
Reaching out to help a friend who’s stuck in tribulation.
But then they just don’t listen to our desperate pleas and cries,
They simply ignore our efforts, and call our warnings lies.
Sorrow fills our bodies as we gaze at a friend lost,
Heading down a darkened path, unaware of cost.
We try and try to hold their hand, to lead them the right way,
But they simply refuse to listen, for their hearts have gone astray.
And, for the friend giving advice, the pain is sure and real,
For they know best, and try to help their wayward friends to feel.
When a person does this thing, and good advice ignores,
The sorrow of their consequences spreads faster than a war.
Not only will they feel regret, when their path does reach its end,
But so shall feel their caring, loving, yet newly ignored friend.
So think first before you decide to go your stubborn way,
Listen to the caring warnings of friends from day to day.
Do not ignore their earnest pleas, if righteous these pleas are,
Stand by good friends, and give them heed, and you will then go far.
 --Karl Southwick

There are few things that make me sadder than giving a friend good advice and having them simply ignore it, moving on with what they want to do instead of what they know they should do. However, I know that I've done the same thing in the past to some of my friends. Basically, if we want to be better people, it'd be wise to listen to our friends when they tell us what they know and what we know is right. If they say we shouldn't do something, and we know they're right, no matter how much we may want to do that thing, we should listen. There's less pain in the end if you simply heed the words of your friends.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Poem #13--My Personal Mission Statement

My Personal Mission Statement

Every success begins with a dream.
Whether working alone or as part of a team.
I will never stop dreaming, as long as I live,
And when others stop dreaming, assistance I’ll give.
I shall help all my colleagues, my neighbors and friends,
I shall love them forever, for time never ends.
But first comes my family, the love of my life,
We shall stand together, through trouble and strife.
To them I shall give my utmost devotion,
Share memories and happiness, the purest emotion.
I will value integrity, and loyalty, too,
Honesty and truthfulness shall be my virtues.
I shall never give up on doing my best,
I shall never hate others, nor others detest.
To those who I meet, I will give due respect,
I shall think all my life, so I never forget.
The things I have learned shall always be there,
To build upon them is a primary care.
I shall lean upon God as I travel on my way,
Shall be used as a tool in his hands all my days.
I shall never give up, and I never will quit,
I will instead start again and build up bit by bit.
I shall work well with others, both woman and man,
I shall be there to help them, their thoughts understand.
I shall spend my life helping, to be there for my friends,
I shall guide them, when needed, through life’s twists and bends.
I will press on forever, through joy and through sorrow,
For this defines me, today and tomorrow.
-Karl Southwick

Each of us, while on this earth, needs something to drive us, something to guide us as we undertake this tempestuous journey of life. Personally, there are many things that I intend to focus on, specific aspects of life that I wish to follow and develop, that I might be the best I can be in all areas. This poem is the embodiment of those dreams, goals, and aspirations, drafted in order to be a map for my individual life. If I live according to these principles and standards I have set for myself, then I shall have no regrets. All people should have things like these, sets of directions they have established for themselves and that they can follow. I encourage you to come up with your own, and to abide by your own precepts.

Poem #12--Families

Families

On this mortal journey, we oft feel alone,
Abandoned, resented, joy is unknown.
We swim through our trials, but quickly grow faint,
What started as water has thickened to paint.
We struggle and kick, fighting for air,
But slowly we sink, giving in to despair.
And then, all alone, we give up the fight
And plunge into the darkness, deeper than night.
If this is our case, then why even try?
If this is our fate, why have we not died?
What do you do, when the waves start to swell?
How do you survive, and the darkness dispel?
Listen, I’ll tell you, the answer to these
Is to realize the power of strong families.
We need not live in cruel isolation,
From this our family can be our salvation.
And this, my dear friend, is the solution to life,
The answer to struggling, to pain, and to strife.
Families are the seed from which goodness is sown,
For with them we’re strengthened. We’re never alone.
So, when you’re drowning, in trials’ dark seas,
Turn to your companions, your mortal family.
Love them and help them, and you will soon find
They are a power that strengthens the mind.
So never forget, for these words are true:
Your family is there, and they can help you.
-Karl Southwick

This one is fairly self-explanatory. It has come to my attention that the power of family bonds in today's society is grossly undermined. People seem to just lose the will to try to help the members of their family, becoming so focused on themselves that they lose sight of the bigger picture. The thing is, the family is one of our greatest assets in our lives. We have been born into groups of fellow human beings, who have taught us and raised us, helping us along our way. In nature, most organisms experience a closeness with their families, with the groups they were born into. Humans are not an exception. Our relationships with our families should be as powerful as we can make them, for we're all on this journey together. Why should we have to go at it alone? And why on earth should we not help and gain help from those to whom we are naturally close? Not only is it good sociology, but it is science. Families are powerful. Rely on them and love them, and the quality of your life can increase exponentially.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Poem #11--The Worth of Your Soul

The Worth of Your Soul

I’ve heard that life’s a battleground, that we wage a constant war.
I’ve heard that life is full of pain, and infinite locked doors.
I’ve heard that happiness is rare, that joy is often lost,
I’ve heard that freedom is never true, and bought at a great cost.
Now, if these things are true, my friend, then why do we exist?
Why do we keep being born if troubles just persist?
Could it be there’s something more, just waiting to be found?
Could it be that love and light are always all around?
When life gets dark, and we get lost, we often can lose hope.
We sometimes think that we have failed, and know not how to cope.
We lose sight of who we are, of who we can become,
We think that we are worthless, that our lives should be undone.
We think it would not matter if we had never been,
That none would even care if they saw us ne’er again.
We might feel insignificant, unwanted, and alone,
Stupid, ugly, an awful friend, with no place to call home.
So, what do you do when all these thoughts enter into your mind?
How on earth do you turn these thoughts into a better kind?
The answer, friend, is a simple one, you just must meet this goal:
To understand and comprehend the value of your soul.
You, yourself, are great to God, and are beloved of Him,
He wants only what’s best for you, He wants for you to win.
So, when you fall, just get back up; your life is yours to lead.
Smile, laugh, and show your love, and please, this counsel heed:
You are special, you are great: God’s love for you is true.
No one can take the steering wheel; you are the only you.
And, no matter what you think, there are those who care,
Friends in need and friends indeed, who would die if you weren’t there.
So never, ever doubt yourself; never forget your worth,
Your soul is great, and that is why you came down to this Earth.
Remember this and you will find that all will turn out fine.
Remember this and you can gain a needed peace-of-mind.
Remember this, that you are loved, just the way you are.
You are one of God’s children, a bright and shining star.
Never doubt your own self-worth, it’s greater than you can know,
Never doubt your grand potential, or how much you can grow.
And, when things get tough and hard, and life seems at an end,
Remember that you will always have some true and faithful friends.
These friends love you, just as God does, for who you are today;
They love you and wouldn’t want you any other way.

-Karl Southwick-

One common problem among people of today's world is a lack of self-confidence. There are many among us who feel that we are worthless, that we are alone and unloved. This is untrue. None in this life are unloved, and none are worthless. The worth of every soul is great in the sight of God, and therefore we are all meant to be here. We're here for a reason. Family, friends, and God are all there with us, loving us every step of the way. So never feel that you aren't worthy of life, that you would be better off dead. That is not true. Your family and friends love you, and, even if you feel they don't, God does. We are his children, and we therefore need not fear that we are worthless. He loves us, He cares for us, and He will always be with us when we need Him.

Poem #10--Darkened Paths

Darkened Paths

I was once a man of great pomposity,
Known for blatant, frank ferocity,
Who, compelled by curiosity,
Headed on my way.

To achieve my fame, and fortune, too,
I deserted everything that I knew,
And, leaving behind all that was true,
I traveled forth that day.

The paths were long, and often dark,
The light was oft less than a spark.
I began to wonder why I did embark
On this journey of the soul.

My coat was ripped by clinging thorns,
My shoes were wet, my pants were torn.
I began to grow ever more forlorn
As I lost sight of my goal.

And then I reached the final straw,
Upon my drive I could no longer draw,
As I was swallowed by the wood’s great maw
And plunged into despair.

All alone, and filled with fear,
Surrounded by nothing that I held dear,
Anguish became an icy spear,
Driven through my heart.

To trembling knees, I then did sink,
As all was lost, so I did think,
I found myself right on the brink
Of succumbing to the dark.

But then, to my extreme surprise,
A spectacle unfolded before my eyes:
A hidden path lost its disguise,
And like a light did shine.

A flowing strength did fill me then,
And I looked back to where I’d been,
And then looked on, then back again,
Down the paths of time.

And finally, I understood,
Why I had entered into this wood:
It had been for my own good,
This truth did I discern.

I got back up, and looked ahead,
I was not done, my will not dead,
I took a step, and, grinning, said:
“My lesson I have learned.”

So now, my friends, this you must hear:
When light is gone, and darkness near,
Do not give up, or in to fear,
Instead, just choose the right,

And you’ll become an honest soul,
Humble, happy, you’ll reach your goals.
For darkened paths play a vital role:
They lead you to the light.

--Karl Southwick

Life can be viewed as a series of paths that are followed through a massive, ever-changing wood. Sometimes, the paths are clearly lighted and therefore easy to follow. However, there are times when shadows are cast on the paths, and we begin to lose sight of them. These shadows symbolize trials and hardships. Sometimes in life, when we are met with such difficult challenges, we begin to lose sight of the path we've been following, we begin to lose sight of our ultimate destination. We are then met with a choice: we can give up and quit moving forward, or we can continue on the path, knowing that it will become light again. All things are so. Darkness always gives way to light in the end.