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Things We Cannot Control

Updated on September 16, 2012

There are things that are larger than life
Things that are an unanswerable horror
And they are more than we can contemplate
That’s why sometimes all it takes is rain to make us smile
I could never become a politician
Because it is not my nature to assign blame
Or to promise things beyond my own capacity
Instead I think about things that I cannot change
I can’t offer shelter to strangers who need a roof
I can’t stop an addiction that causes turmoil in another country
I can’t make people stop the moment before greed becomes theft
I just consider these things and not allow my mind to become soft
The way to your heart is to give up your own desires
It’s not a matter of always giving of yourself
Or living in a constant state of denial
It’s about shedding resentments and fear
I don’t like to live within a bubble of inferiority
But sometimes I let people get to me
I count my blessings and compare them to theirs
And all I can do is remember why I’m not great
It seems the hardest thing in the world is to be happy for someone
Not because they survived cancer or the loss of loved one
But because they achieved something
Or because they are better looking than I am
Maybe that’s why I gravitate towards the cleaning lady
Or someone who lives paycheck to paycheck
Is it because I am humble and prefer the salt of the earth
Or is it because they make me feel better about myself?
In my words are provocative statements that cannot be proven
But when you consider the plight of the poor and only the poor
Then you have taken the side of the trees and the forest
And they may say that I am fool but I made them think about these things
And it is because they must or else they will only think about precious metals
And not how they are extracted from the ground
Or they will think about plastic and touch screens
And not how long they will take to vanish from the earth
For you see poems are merely the thoughts of a lonely but inspired man
And to dare to speak out loud about things that we leave for God
Is to bring God into your heart and to open yourself up to compassion
And then you can feel the beat of another person’s heart within your own
If I have affected you maybe it is because you and I are the same
Because if you feel ordinary then you are my kind of person
And if you now feel inspired then you have become what I want to be
And if we can walk together then we have solved all the worlds problems


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    • The Suburban Poet profile image

      The Suburban Poet 4 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you tlmcgaa - I agree wholeheartedly. When they insist upon being written then it's a thought that is fully developed. I think what is happening to me is that things that started in my mind long ago are now bearing fruit each day.

      @Eiddwen - Thank you again.

      I find myself saying this a lot but I'm sorry I took so long to acknowledge your kind words.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      Wonderful and thanks for sharing this gem.


    • tlmcgaa70 profile image

      tlmcgaa70 5 years ago from south dakota, usa

      the most profound things are the ones that insist upon being written, not the ones we must hunt for.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image

      The Suburban Poet 5 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Hi Tammy - Thank you for your nice comment and for sharing!

      @tlmegaa - Thnk you!

      I wrote this in response to my own questions about why I bother to write poetry about metaphysics and the human condition. It seems so useless sometimes....

    • tlmcgaa70 profile image

      tlmcgaa70 5 years ago from south dakota, usa

      moving and inspiring...beautifully written, thank you for writing it and thank you Tammy for sharing it or i might never have seen it. voted up, beautiful and shared

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      This is beautiful and profound. Really demonstrates that so much is really out of our control and that our good intentions do so little no matter how great they are. Excellent poem!