mindfulness clear and radiant – a poem by Elijah East

mindfulness clear and radiant

Like a theme park, as a kid
you run around
so much ground to cover
so much air and space
to fly through
and it’s all for you. 
Grown-ups usually 
use up land on stuff
that means nothing to you.
And yet they made all this 
for you. The world is rarely
yours, but this is.
And you can trust 
that no emptiness
will find you 
all day. 
Not in the sky
or waiting in line.
It keeps coming back to you.
You swallow it, flying,
wide-open-mouth in the air
never full-up,
like the magician 
eating his long balloon noodle
in one mouthful. 
You taste it in the cotton candy,
in the screams that fly
to the back of your throat. 
And if you ever know
this feeling again
you ought to use it.
Go see the world
in sunrise-hikes 
and wild swimming
and long bus rides
because the new worlds
outside the window
will be one large theme park.
The world really is all yours;
the beauty in a blue-painted door
the sun setting behind the supermarket
the car parking spaces
with lines painted white
and little flowerbeds 
planted by the side;
it’s perfect, it really is.
And it’s yours to move through.
It wasn’t made for you 
or with any reverence 
to the sacredness of humans
but that doesn’t mean it can’t be
the place where you realise 
that all things are perfect.

Elijah East is a support worker for disabled adults in Leeds. His poetry concerns queer bodies and the queer experience, whilst also contemplating the spiritual. This is his first published poem, though his work can also be found on Instagram @elijahjayx . 

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