The Essential Task – a poem by Will Stenberg

The Essential Task

Forgive me, there is space in heaven.
Forgive me there is time inside me.
Inside all things a massive quiet.
Outside, the scream.

Wholeness in the rich good sun,
words that work,
All things in time.
Breathing is the essential task.

Love leads to love, or despair.
No one knows.
Off we go.
This is the door of fear,
of danger, but the only way forward –
the dilemma.
Some of us are broken before we barely start.
And we’re moving forward.
And we’re crying in dry rooms.
Our souls like corn husks.
Our souls all gathered, acidic.
Our souls needing love.
Love leads to love, or despair.
No one knows.
On we go.

Stupid skies and rich land,
silent earth and shouting skies.
Between we run, desperate for each other.
For another.
To stop or stall the sense of self.

When will we be healed?
When the light pour in?
Empty your heart.
Stand sober before the groaning sea.
My friend, you will not survive this.

You don’t need to,
here before the moaning sea.
Here before the healing sea.
These choices made you
before you made these choices
and all of these paths
lead back to where you started
at the place where light was born
and no one needs to be forgiven.


Will Stenberg is a musician, writer, bartender and boxer who was raised in the wilds of Northern California and currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

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