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.

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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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