Do you know how to live?

[This #1667 Words entry is by Zack Vandermeulen.]

You ask me if I know how to live and I can answer you that I have.

I have lived as a man, as a woman, as a king and as a pauper.
I don’t know why I am born again into this life.
I do not understand why I am reborn every time I die.
And believe me; I have tried to change that.

You see, the first time I was reborn I didn’t mind. I could do and explore more.
I always was the adventurous one in my family.
My first family I mean.
So I was reborn in a similar situation and circumstances as I was before.

I retained all of my knowledge, all of my memories.
I knew every little detail of my past life,
past lives, as it is now.
It’s one of those buggering things of having a photographic memory.

But by time number four it was a little irritating.
By time number ten I was sick of it.
As soon as I could consciously choose my actions, somewhere between two and three,
I tried to end it all.

I jumped off buildings; I drowned in the rivers and seas.
I shot myself. I stabbed myself. I poisoned myself.
I have been eaten alive; by animals and cannibals both.
And yet I was still reborn.

By time number one hundred I gave up with Death.
He doesn’t seem to like me, as much as I would love for Him to take me.
So, I explored different worlds, different aspects in the social ladder.
I tried to make do with what I had.

So, male or female; black or white; rich or poor;
and quite frankly anywhere in between I’ve lived and tried.
And the world grew and changed.
Just like my knowledge.

So, you there just asked me if I know how to live.
Yes, I know how to live.
Or maybe, at one point I have lived.
It doesn’t matter.

I have lived entire millennia with one foot in the gutters with the rats,
and the other in the palace amongst the royals.
I knew how to live.
I know how to live.

So how can you stand there all prim and proper without looking at the other side?
Without looking at yourself in a different light.
Without looking at the world from a differing perspective.
Maybe the better question is:

Do you know how to live?

[Zack lives in Canandaigua, New York. He’s often found in front of his computer trying to put the world on his head onto paper.]

Don’t forget to tell Zack how much you like his poem by rating it with the stars below!

You can find out more about the 1,667 Words Story Contest here.

About Kurt Schweitzer

A former vampire logistics facilitator, past purveyor of Italian-style transportation, and Y2K disaster preventer, I'm currently creating websites, novels and other fictions while reinventing myself. Again.
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2 Responses to Do you know how to live?

  1. writerrick says:

    Deep thoughts.
    Well done!

  2. Written very well. I liked the structure and how you drew the reader in and made me keep reading even after the words ran out,

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