Breathing but not alive …

I know not if I am alive,
I’m breathing but not living.

I’m forgotten when I’m near,
not wanted by anyone dear;
valueless till I am wanted,
uncared for what I’m worth,
seen for but earning wads,
till I do that, all are glad;
till needs become too much,
and I need to start anew,
for a place showing more,
more wads that replace you.

icy stares that pierce,
icy words that freeze mind,
for any words that disobey,
they are the return I find;
I am just the slab of meat,
that all stab just to survive,
I’m breathing but not living,
I know not if I am alive,
I know not if I am alive.


Shared with Verse First and dVerse Open Link Night .


(January 30th, 2013)

Poetry & writing are to me, a breath of fresh air in a life that is sometimes covered by the smoke of sorrow or self doubt. They also become the sweets I share to celebrate when life offers me a reason to. But most of all, they are to me, my life. For each word I write is a piece of my heart, a thought that just had to find its way into the world.

44 thoughts on “Breathing but not alive …

  1. I’m not going to say I understand where you are coming from here, but for me I recognize in this poem PayDay, the day I am noticed, when I get stabbed but never can satisfy.

  2. Leo, I DO understand the difference between ‘living’ and ‘being alive.’ And I think you have captured the difference very powerfully! I understand feeling valueless unless wanted. Hard to bear when one feels that. And the icy stares are glare ice on a person’s mind and heart. The ‘slab of meat’ image was strong in your poem. Your poem was a poem of sadness…but thoughts were very well expressed!

    • Some people do understand that difference, Mary. It’s needed, but I think money dominates a lot so much so that the person we are is forgotten. I’m possibly more known to being that “slab” at times. Glad you felt the power in the poem.

  3. whew…i am the slab of meet people stab just to get by…what a hard line that is….this is a very cold and loinely place…feeling unnoticed and that you dont matter….felt your verse man…

  4. It is hard to have those feelings, and I definitely relate. Anyone who can write as well as this should know he has great value in this world, even if those close to him need to wake up!

    • Glad you felt I can write it out well, Sherry. Thank you. As for people close to me waking me up, sometimes they are the same people that make me feel that way in the first place. Happens. Life’s like that.

  5. We live in a society where money and status are valued and nothing else. Unfortunately we are passing our secular values on to the third world who are embracing them at a rate of knots. Your poem says it all…an unpalatable truth but truth nevertheless.Refreshing poem.

    • I don’t like that part of society at all, Cressida. But I do live amongst them. So I guess I must adjust. Try as I do, I don’t think that society can change that easily.

  6. (From the checkbook to the slab of meat)…thanks for that post…It conveys how i feel much of the time. Icy stares and all, or perhaps they are looking thru us…I am not treating this as fiction as i know i should…because it hits close to home for me…thanks for sharing..

  7. sketched the turmoil my mind goes through at times . . i could relate to every word of it . . beautifully penned . . hey , your new book review blog is really good . . i am planning to go through the reviews from now on 🙂

  8. Lot of emotions running through as I am reading this. And well, like always, have two sided opinion. The mind knows, very well understands this is how the world runs. You are nothing but an opinion, no matter, how good or bad you are. People will, in fact, the ones whom you think are the best in the world, will some point or other would treat as you as option. Perhaps, thats how we all brought up, or rather changed into, with lessons the world teach us – to be selfish?

    The ‘meat’ part hit hard to many I am sure. We all have those bitter memories, and people who just wiped us out like we never existed? The mind knows. The problem is the heart. It just doesn’t understand, it never can. Coz it’s not his job. Only a mind can think, not a heart. Heart just feels, and its very feelings that hurt the poor heart, for all the love, care and trust it bestowed on hearts it loved.

    Needless to say, your words are exceptionally well, but they revealed the heart pricks, which in more or less way, all of us experience. May be that’s one of the way to live – just to breathe, and don’t feel alive?

    Hugs and hope you get out of this phase soon 🙂

    • It may be the way the world runs, but there comes a time when even my mind will not understand that behaviour. Because even logic gets strained under such pressure or indifference from society, where some are the people you care about. I hope the phase is temporary as well, ADG. Thanks!

  9. Good one Leo!! 🙂 I think these icy stares are common in our country, isn’t it? No wonder I was going to take up a similar route for Kim’s challenge..I’m glad I didn’t 🙂 You brought that out better.

  10. I know that when one is feeling lonely and mistreated that we sometimes wonder if we are alive at all. You capture this well, though it is chilling to think about this happening to someone.

  11. I can sense that frustration which stems from not being able to find any fulfilling purpose or meaning to our lives, when we don’t “live” but merely “exist” and “survive” one day at a time. I have been there too, felt the same pangs of doubts. But, I guess, for people who are unable to realize their worth on their own, they should reach out to someone who can tell them that their presence makes a difference, not in a selfish, to-be-used-and-forgotten way.

    One of the best poems I’ve read recently. Keep it up. And feel better. 🙂

    • Even if you realize your worth on your own, and don’t want others to tell you that you make a difference, when that someone is one that really matters to you and they act like you don’t matter to them at all, then it will hurt. Because when that person matters to you, you don’t think with your mind, you think with your heart, and you can’t train yourself not to.

      Thank you, ES.

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