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Saturday, January 19, 2013

Still Standing

I came across this poem below that I wrote in 9th Grade while digging through some dusty old memory boxes hidden away in the closet.  Pictures of my child hood.  Home made movies.  A box full of good times and great memories.  Happy times that no one can take from me.  A picture of my mom and dad getting married.....weird.  A birthday letter I wrote to my father in 3rd grade.  F report cards next to hundreds of poems and stories I used to write in my room.  I forgot how much I used to write.....I forgot how angry I was.  But where did this anger come from? All these pictures and home movies show a happy family with a happy kid.  I was the most loving kid in the whole world, the happiest damn kid my mom would tell me repeatedly, but deep down I was a troubled kid with many problems by looking at this box full of crinkled papers I put to writing.  Hot or cold.  Bomb out or gold.  In jail or buying a house.  Happy or sad.  Very close to my dad, now couldn't be further away.  An extreme lifestyle that started I guess when I was born.  An angel and demon on each shoulder that has no understanding of compromise.  Why this broken heart growing up?  Why the running away from home?  Why the drug and alcohol use?  What was I trying to hide from, or make go away?  

I guess the Dark Orchestra started in 5th grade when I wrote my first poem for class. The teacher called in my mom and step dad to talk about how disturbing she thought my writing was, and where it was coming from.  They said it was "too dark" for a kid my age.  The Dark Orchestra was born, the skeletons were lining up to enter my closet in a single file line.  Councilor after councilor I went through.  Story after story I wrote with pain in my pencil.  I would write at the bus stop, or while I slept in the woods when I was a run away.  I would write high as a kite at 2 AM.  Thank you writing for letting a confused kid express himself.  

Here is the poem I wrote and read in front of my class in high school.  It was a contest where I ended up placing dead last.  They said it was a little "too dark" for this type of competition. Words I have heard before.  Another F, another brick on my back.  People ask me how I became the weightlifter I am today, and I tell them it was from all the years of fighting with myself that has made me stronger than any weightlifting program could ever accomplish.  No regrets in life.  Never dwell on the past, for without the past you would not be you today.  Use what you have been through to your advantage.  Just like the cab driver in my last blog, his coffee cup was half full, not half empty.  Salute.  

Still Standing

by Jonathan North

My tears have fallen
My knees have shaked
I've been hit torn and stabbed
but never lose fate
I've slipped into holes with no escape 
trying to look for a hand to help
but always too late
My small steps are still young
for long strides I may fall
Deep holes keep me down
but never I stall
On my hands and knees I crawl 
then to stand tall
for eyes I see
but no response from my call
Which path do I take
Which decision do I make
I feel so lost and empty and built up with hate
searching for the one to speak words that relate
So I wait, soon I will be followed
for it's my turning point of tomorrow 
A shadow that casts a brighter light on my sorrow
the anger and frustration I will never have to swallow
My insides have been beaten
My skin hasn't been touched
I will fight this war
Never give up
Rest my head to sleep and fierce to wake up
I never burn down
with bricks on my back in water don't drowned 

Pencil & Paper 2016 


  1. I really enjoyed that, keep writing please.

  2. reason #3490343 why you inspire me: to think you went from a kid that people probably looked at and thought "damn whats wrong with this kid and all these dark thoughts and weird poems?? wonder how he is gonna end up..." to being the leader of an entire NATION and having as much success and positive impact on peoples lives as i have seen from just about anyone... thats gangsta my friend.