self-love

Complete

©Erica Cirino. Linocut print “The Swing Tree,” 3/5. 2017.

©Erica Cirino. Linocut print “The Swing Tree,” 3/5. 2017.

There is no greater moment–no moment filled with more excitement and possibility–than the realization that you need nothing auxiliary to make you whole; the realization that you, yourself have the power to destroy and create; the realization that all you need and all you are lies inside of you; the realization that you are good: A sentient being with wisdom and knowledge, power and weakness, virtue and vice, empathy and jealousy, love and hate.

You are nothing more, you are nothing less. You are complete.

Originally posted to Medium on April 6, 2017. 

Peace

A poem about looking for salvation on the open sea. 

©Erica Cirino. Pacific Ocean, November 2016.

©Erica Cirino. Pacific Ocean, November 2016.

Out here

There is not much to see

But the sky and water

Which pass above and below me

Each day, each hour, 

Each minute, each second.

Each day is mostly the same.

I spend my time

Steering and cleaning

And cooking and writing,

And wondering

Why I came

Out here.

Deep down, 

I know.

Out here,

I thought

I could be saved,

I could find purpose,

A vision 

Of my true self,

An understanding

Of what

I am doing here

As one small being

On a vast planet.

So I went looking for myself

Out here,

At sea,

Beneath the great white sails

That stand quiet 

And taut in the gale

Yet flap loudly in the calm,

Sounding like

A thousand pages

Turning

In an enormous book;

Amongst the elegantly gliding seabirds

And the sleek blue-gray dolphins,

That eye the ship

With a look

Of both curiosity and caution;

With a group of strangers

Whom I share little in common with

Other than my sense of adventure

And humanity.

After 23 days

At sea,

When my bare feet meet

Solid earth

For the first time

In a long time,

And my legs sway

Like reeds in a breeze

Unused to the stillness,

My body still seeking

The strange comfort

Of movement,

Of the wind and the waves,

I ask myself,

“Have you found what you were looking for,

Out there?”

Yes, I believe I did

Find something:

Peace.

Originally posted to Medium on March 23, 2017. 

Enough

A poem for International Women's Day 2017. 

Quote from Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese.” ©Erica Cirino

Quote from Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese.” ©Erica Cirino

For far too long

I’ve let others dictate

My happiness,

Measure my worth.

Despite their biases

And inaccuracies,

I let them do it

Because I was afraid,

Afraid to stop them,

Afraid to raise my voice.

Today, it ends:

The sadness,

The overwhelming, unshakable

Feelings of inadequacy.

I will decide

To be happy,

To be worthy,

To be beautiful,

To be loved,

To be enough. ♀️