• Kathy Curtis

When life feels tenuous

















We are all living on the brink of something, aren’t we? But what is it? Disaster? Or the cracking open of our collective soul, so that a better human race can emerge? Whatever it is, it feels like a tenuous time to be alive.


Or maybe it has always been a tenuous time to be alive. Maybe that’s what it means to be human. We are born into a world we didn’t create, with conditions that challenge us beyond measure. We do the best we can every single day to navigate this foreign place, and on any given day, our best might not be worth a damn.


We seek comfort in silly ways. We self-medicate. We scream into the void.


addicted fingers

trip emotional land mines

in facebook heaven


But ultimately, we’re left with ourselves. With what it feels like to be living, not in the world, but inside our own bodies. And there are wars raging in there. Pain, anger, fears, anxieties, and all of them going off like bombs, triggered by too many things to count.


We need some peace. And somewhere amidst all those bombs, peace sits quietly inside, calling our names.


the little glimmers

shining through the dense layers

of composted hope


We stockpile hope every time we shut off the noise for awhile and give ourselves a moment of peace. When we take a walk through the woods and let nature hold our hands. When we sit at our table and create something that has never existed before. When we see someone needing a helping hand at the grocery store and offer our assistance. In a million little ways, we know just where to go and what to do to defuse the bombs and experience the power of peace.


the doodling line

where the light kisses the trees

in the evening sky

We don’t know where life is taking us. The one thing we can choose to hold onto as the chaos reigns around us, is our claim to peace. Our sanity. Our mental strength in the face of confusing times.


It’s so easy to get lost in the overlapping chatter happening inside and all around us. Those thoughts get tangled up in balls of emotion-fueled confusion. That’s why taking pen to paper is such a profound path to peace. It extracts the jumble of thoughts from the untamed synapses of your mind and helps them find order, find calm, find truth.


The things we put into words help us retain our shape, even as we quiver.


If you’d like to explore the mind-clearing process of writing haiku, click here.


Words from program participants:

"I love how the 5-7-5 rhythm 'rule' makes you toss your issue around until it fits - it's so therapeutic.”


"I am really enjoying this haiku workshop! It's definitely helping me manage my anxiety right now!”


“I am in awe. I had not expected so much joy. Your course is incredibly helpful in so many ways."