TO THE HUMAN
A collection of short poems regarding the
human condition and its deep connection
Written by Blaire Grady
Photography by Jerome W. Berglund
SIT LIKE MONKS
Tomorrow, just as today,
I will not live for the life unattained.
I will replace useful things
once they are bent and unbearable.
By then, their replacements are,
to me, most attainable.
I will wait for wants to turn to needs
for a life lived to attain true happiness.
You see, I am not lazy, crazy or sad
to choose not to challenge the life that I have.
I am free to rest in my skin as it is
while I savor the suckle that is given by nature.
I am free to sit and whisper with breezes
as I marvel the squirrel perched with the raven.
I am free, just as you, to feel warmth from the sun
once I am mindful of the solace it offers.
These are the moments for which I live
the senses in which I delight
because these are the tokens a simple life gives,
too often removed for the life unattained.
ROAM LIKE ANIMALS
Where to, butterfly?
Over the valley,
riding on ripples
atop rivers running
to oceans unknown.
Where to, tortoise?
Miles from inches,
taking my time
across roads leading
to lands unknown.
Where to, child?
Into gray skies,
casting the sun
through clouds heading
to kingdoms unknown
HEAL LIKE MOTHERS
Mother as we know her
is finally fed up,
deciding to flip script
and give us a good show.
To remind humankind
who God was and still is
as we worship other humans,
indifferent and alone.
While madness lives in many
and thrives among the masses,
she weeps acid rain
as we ignore her restrictions.
What we see as profound
is made flawed and flaccid,
as bodies splay out
for newspaper subscriptions.
Influencers speak up
for the sake of good fun,
followed by those who know
too little, far less.
only after deeds are done,
and privilege is given
to deeply disturbed debts.
This is our mother,
as we’ve known her a long while—
she is dying,
handing over her heart.
We can no longer neglect
or toss her aside,
rather live for her nature
or forever fall apart.
LEAD LIKE FATHERS
What would I give
to walk with you
down a path,
long and beaten
as the river.
All of the things
that make mankind mean,
precious relics and warm furs,
stretched as far as the day’s dark
and light years beyond even that.
SING LIKE SPIRITS
The sweetest song of a lone cardinal,
she bears this pitch to my right ear.
It’s bowed with harmonics and into vibratos,
softly she comes back again.
Deep into focus, I suddenly startle
from the swift ricochet of her strings,
but she knows that I’ll smile at each of her strokes,
as she tunes for all of my feels.
I brace for the time I hear the double stop,
and I listen for it at every turn.
A signal of delight in our long day’s work,
a cue that my work here is done.
She is sweet, inviting, warmly excited
to come to me whenever she needs
the nod of reassurance, that all will be played
in harmony to harpers and queens.
SLEEP LIKE BABIES
in a muslin
subtle and soft
soothes in song
a gentle kiss
Minneapolis photographer Jerome Berglund is a USC graduate in cinema production. His work has been featured in many journals, including the cover of pacificREVIEW. He staged a Twin Cities exhibition which included a residency of several months, his photographs were showcased at Pause Gallery in New York; his fashion photography has been displayed at bG Gallery in Santa Monica.
Jerome has explored a variety of themes figuratively, following a principle of fatalistic discovery within the chaos of natural elements to seek out and construct a series of allegorical tableaus centered upon subjects of addiction, recovery, alcoholism, mental illness, depression, anxiety, alienation, loss, heartbreak, gentrification, corruption, hope, and acceptance.
Blaire Grady is a professional writer and visual artist with over fifteen years of experience in marketing and graphic design. She is also the proud creator of Strangers & Karma. Read more