Desparation

If I had a dollar for every time we say, 

“If I had a dollar”

I’d have enough

To never even bother

I’d buy a private island

In a land faraway 

Take every single dollar

And give it all away

I’d be the poorest and the richest

And no one else would know

Buried my treasure in the sand

To see if it grows

Then in a state of desperation

For all that I have lost

I will hold myself for ransom

To see how much I cost

We weren’t born for this 

But still we do it daily

We let the world we created

Drive us crazy

“I choose the lie over life

Believing it will save me”

Is the thought

Of the emotionally lazy

You’ve been lied to

How is it possible you can’t see this?

It wasn’t God

Who created us to be this

To the One we are Beloved

It’s our Name from the Beginning

It’s believing otherwise

That’s the Genesis of sinning

Desperation

How did we get this way?

It defeats the very purpose

Every time we try to pray

I can’t stand it

How many times can we be told?

You can’t serve two masters

And the worst of them is gold

©️ Copyright 2021 Pedro S. Silva II

Belonging to Not Belonging

They say “Get in where you fit in.”
But I can’t find my space.
Like looking in the mirror
But cannot recognize my face.

No one else can see me.
What should I expect?
An outsider can’t get in
I’m destined a reject.

Damn this hunger for belonging.
I’m never satisfied
Because of the idea, “I should be special.”
Now I see it was all a lie.

All heartbreaks come from beauty
Or longing for it to be
The presence of an absence
The soul was never meant to see

So now I’m coming out of hiding
I need to recognize my grief
Because I know me, but cannot show me,
I’m a product of disbelief.

© Copyright 2021 Pedro S. Silva II



A Friend In Need

They say a friend in need is a friend indeed
Or is it a friend in deed
Meaning a friend is one who acts as one
When another friend’s in need

Or maybe it’s the former one
We’re friends when we’re in want
But otherwise we give no others thought
Just to make it blunt

But perhaps it is more gray than that
Which makes it difficult to name
Because where self-sufficiency is idolized
To be in need is to be shamed

It’s really hard to put my finger on
As I examine my condition
When I’m aware enough to know I should ask for help
But won’t fully give myself permission

On one side, it’s because I don’t want help
I have learned so much from all my failing
But on the other side, I know that there’s sufficient grace
For those of us prone to self-assailing

Furthermore when I’m on the giving end
I always do what I can do
But when I’m on the receiving end
I do my best to just push through

But presently I am torn
This uphill battle seems unending
I could keep on trying to handle this
But in reality I’m pretending

I’ve always been good at holding burdens
But now my burdens are holding me
As I consider that I’m just a request away
From a space that feels more free

Well, if anything, there’s a lesson
These constraints I feel won’t last
And it matters little if I hear “yes” or “no”
Things will get better because I asked

© Copyright 2020 Pedro S. Silva II

I wrote this poem after wrestling with my thoughts about whether or not I should share a fundraiser I created for my mother to help ease some of the financial impact of her pending move.  This season has been really tender for me for a lot of reasons. Besides watching my mother succumb to the effects of a lifetime of stress and anxiety, trying to keep this pressure to myself has taken its toll on me and my family, both emotionally and financially. But it’s not all bad. This also has been a very creative season for me as I’ve tried to make sense of my own anxieties in light of my faith that when we are open, there is a solution to every concern. I’ve written poems that I never would’ve been able to write were I not translating, what at times felt like, overwhelming emotion. I completed a rap that I’m really proud of despite the fact that it has not yet brought in any of the money I’d naively thought it would. And in my social justice and community building work, knowing that I am personally impacted by so much of the challenges that we’re trying to ameliorate, has shaped my preaching and public speaking in a way that perhaps it would not if my family was more shielded. And finally, by putting this out here, I feel that it is on the path of healing the ill effects of the negative type of pride. And so here we are.

The New Me

In a Roofless Church blog post, I wrote about how I sometimes hold myself back from shining my light. The excuse that I was using was that by holding myself back in some areas, I was somehow protecting the people who would otherwise try to hold me back. I’d hold myself back before they could try to. Yeah. That sounds pretty silly writing. But I made it make sense. Fortunately, I didn’t hold myself back completely. I made sure to write whether it was blogs, poems, articles, letters, etc. Doing this was like leaving myself clues back to me. And writing that post admitting to myself what I was doing was just the push I needed to stop holding myself back in one area that I’ve held back in for decades–my music.

The image above is the cover for my new single. Over a year after I wrote the song, I finally got to a place where I could put it out there and open the door to some new possibilities of creative expression. In so doing, I am admitting to myself that I have no excuse for holding back. Spiritually, speaking, I never had an excuse anyway as I express in some of my lyrics:

They can’t kill me
Holla if you feel me
Who I am was never born
So they’re never getting near me

Many of us are trapped in the habits of old patterns and behaviors that we want more than anything to break free from so that we can be the people we know we are capable of being–better parents, partners, etc. There are unfulfilled dreams that hang over us like shadows and darken our self-perception limiting how we show up in situations. This song is an anthem for those of us who refuse to leave this world without shining that light that we are. We will shine! To be the new us, we will kill the old us. The old us lives fearing the illusion of death. The new us lives life as fully as we possibly can.

Primarily, I wrote this song and am putting it out into the world for myself–to eradicate any excuse I might make to not shine the light that Creator put in me. Secondly, I wrote it for my wife and kids because if there is anything that they want to do, I want them to at least try. Even if they fail, they can hold their head up knowing that they put themselves out there. And I can’t teach them that if I don’t live that. Thirdly, I did it for everybody who needs a reminder that as long as they have breath in their lungs, it is never too late to be who you might’ve been.

To be the new me
I had to kill the old me
To wake up from this lie bruh,
This is what they told me

Wake up from the dream
Death ain’t nothing but a bee sting
Hallelujah’s what we sing
From the moment we see that real thing

To hear my new single click here.

The Wages of Skin

I’m sorry I apologized
When I was just being me
I was just a slave
Who falsely thought I was free

But now that I’m seeing more clearly
This is what I meant to say
Kiss my grits
And get the H-E double hockey stick out my way

I think you get my point
Without me going to extremes
I could say it a little harder
But it wouldn’t change an ounce of what it means

Besides if my dead grandmother were here
And heard me talk to you like that
She’d slap the taste right out my mouth
And give all my apologies back

See, the worst things in life are often inherited
Taught to fear in the name of survival
Illusions of superiority
Cloaked in the excuse that we’re all tribal

We say those before us committed the crimes
But we choose to pay the price
So when we accept the earnings of an unjust cause
The effect is our souls being sacrificed


Me

Emerging from Nowhere
Participating in everything
Desiring Nothing
I walk Alone
With everyone

Death Is Not a Failure

We all succeed at dying

One way or the other

Despite the value we place on holding it back

We have this in common with one another

Even Jesus couldn’t escape it

Though we say it’s a revolving door

He begged if the cup of death could pass

How much less should we implore?

For the living’s only reality

Is to live, and be, and move

Death appearing a contradiction

What can we gain

For all we lose?

Yet, Death is not an ending

Not a new beginning or a door

Nor does it ever take from us

Or give the peace we’re longing for

All we think it is it isn’t

Because we lack the point of view

To see it for what it really is,

We need a different mind to see it through.

One not born through separation

One complete in its perception

One that sees all things for what they are

Present wholeness without rejection

Such a mind must not fear death

In fact it’s grateful for its inclusion

For the only Death there ever is

Is the Death of our illusions

© Copyright 2018 Pedro S. Silva II

The Soul You Rob Is Your Own

Eyes filled with tears

Heart so full

Can’t say it’s spilled milk

Seeing all this bull

Everywhere soul robbers

Work to dig our graves

Offer carrot stick freedom

Keep us unseen slaves

Two faced leaders

Both mouths lie

Stick those needles

In the public eye

So we see nothing

But we don’t know why

Place our hopes in the illusion

They are on our side

But what I see lately

Merely comes to this

In a win-lose world

Someone will be missed

And in a rank based system

You know who it’ll be

Those who don’t pass muster

And those who look like me

But my tears aren’t for pity

For those who play that role

It’s for those who kill worlds

Trying to find their souls

Because in the grand scheme of things

Nothing’s here for the keeping

This is a seed planting realm

So we can live our own reapings

Forever!

© Copyright 2018 Pedro S. Silva II

 

 

 

 

Spoken Wordless

Words cannot express

What words cannot express

But Silence is compelling me

So I will do my best

Though everything is backwards

There is something coming forth

That is leading us to where we’ve never left

So that we’ll always be on course

It’s fullness is not religious

Truth’s Way will free us from our binds

But first we must deny ourselves

So that our True Selves we might find

That is the Revelation

That so many before us bore

But, we lost our Way living outside in

And always keeping score

The Way Showers wants to free us

But we have to kill them first

Because we refuse to be what we will not see

Thus labeling them a curse

But as soon as we can’t see them

We see them as they are

Exposing what we once denied

That we never were that far

Then suddenly we’re speechless

If only we had known

We’d’ve been deliberate in our reaping

So that our freedom could be down.

© Copyright 2018 Pedro Silva

 

The Truths Cannot Die

The next time that you kill us
Remember we never really die
Suppressing us won’t free you
Because Truth can’t sustain a lie

I know our presence scares you
We make you feel unsure
Nothing can quite prepare you
For seeing your prejudice impure

You’ve been taught we’re inconvenient
You try to hide us from your view
But locking us up doesn’t keep us out
Since you can’t get away from you

Your history of violence
Towards those who look like me
Has left so many people silent
That we barely know how to be

You say that we are valued
And yet you try to hide the Truth
But there’s no escaping what’s evident
We are the living proof

But where does this knowledge leave us
For too many it ushers shame
The one thing no one wants to feel
Because we can’t escape the pain

See that’s not what we’re seeking
What we want to share is hope
But in our face you see a mirror
And hang the image from a rope

Your guilt too, is not of value
It’s just denial in different dress
Which leads to justification
Which fosters anger and unrest

So what is the solution?
Where do we go from here?
How can we live by a better Way,
When we hold on to our fear?

The answer is we cannot
We have to let love win
Or die in the darkness that we choose
And then do it all again