Inevitable — Vomit


For the IndieInk Writing Challenge this week, Chaos Mandy challenged me with “the vomit of life,” and I challenged Nimue with “there are lemons, oh so many lemons.” Note: this piece is not especially pleasant, so for my more easily depressed readers, I would recommend searching for a poem on my blog with peaches in the title — you’ll like it better.

What if all the shit in the world is inevitable?
What if the drive bys,
the dropouts,
the drug use,
the drama,
what if it is unrelenting and predictable?
What if one person slamming another person
against a wall,
ripping their clothes,
what if that just happens?
What if we could smell sweat and fear,
the way dogs do?
Would we close in on the weak
like schoolyard bullies?
What if cruelty is —
a fact of life —
simple and realistic?
Should we stand down
in the fight to protect
poor or hungry people?
Does it matter
whether the vulnerable have a hero?
Should we promote selfishness
in the name pragmatism?

What if the beauty —
the glory of sunshine in a crisp sky,
of the sea
or the purple mountains
what if the beauty of the stranger smiling on the street
or of the child who finds joy in a pigeon landing
or in eating an orange —
is only a façade?

What if it doesn’t balance on the scales with ugly?

What can we do
when we realize that we are addicts,
when we see weakness and cruelty
in our own souls?

What can we possibly say if the shit is inevitable?


20 responses »

  1. Dude. I really like this. I love the language of the first stanza — I’ve never considered whether “shit happens” is a realistic idea, and the nature of balancing good and bad–what if bad wins? Hmm. Love the idea. Prompt’s a little gloomy. 🙂

    • Boo, I love your face. Thank you. I really appreciate that because I was feeling guilty for being such a downer. But it’s what occurred when I got the prompt :-/


  2. “Would we close in on the weak
    like schoolyard bullies?”


    We would and we do.

    I’m a cynic. And I do think some of the shit is inevitable. But I’m not a fatalist. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be fighting against it, because it is in the fight that the moments of sustaining beauty are born.

    And who knows. Maybe the beauty is inevitable, too.

    • I think we’re in the same camp. It’s frightening to think we can’t stop it, though.

      Thank you for that comment. I do appreciate the thoughtfulness very much.

    • Haha… yes well, just trying to keep a happy face on all through the night.

      And thank you; there is something good about trying to understand things from many angles.

  3. The good news is, it ain’t. Still a great poem, illuminating the heartbreak and despair that we feel along the way. Sometimes it’s as though we’re wading underwater against a neverending tide of crap, breathing through a straw and some asshole comes along and places his finger over it.

    But this too, shall pass.



  4. You know, some of the vomit of life is inevitable, but I think it’s only because some people don’t stop and think about what they’re doing, and what the implications are for other people as well as themselves. If everyone goes about their lives without trying to see from other perspectives, without realizing that we all live on the same planet for good or ill (in sickness and health, perhaps?), how can we co-exist harmoniously? Like a way, way dead fellow (probably) said: “An unexamined life is not worth living.”
    The best way I have found to deal with the madness of our world is to remember that I can’t change other people’s actions- I can only change how I react to them. This is also way easier said than done 😛

    Mm. I think I have to read this again, and think some more.

    • Wow, bee, thank you for these thoughts. I especially love that quote.

      And that last idea is one I definitely have trouble with, but want to do well (changing how I react and behave, rather than trying to control how other people behave).

      Thank you so much.

  5. Intense but also asking a lot of what ifs. What if life was this bad and things was just downright dreary and miserable and there’s no cause of it all. Why fight to be an overcomer if shit just happens. I like the detail of this poem. Interesting take on the prompt.

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