Poem: What is Hope?

(Not a positive poem. I forgot I wrote this. My depressive swing was deep. I’m coming around. Key in on the positive, right? Focus on what’s going right not wrong. But let’s see if I hit someone’s nerve and make them sad or angry.)

What is Hope?

hope is the light turning on
the night turning to day
the rain passing
the clouds clearing
hope is spring coming every year

hope stares you down
if you know to look
where to find it
more like a search
where you’re missing the clues
or a puzzle where the picture is blank

tell me
what is hope
is it the fall turning to winter
is it the snow piling up
is it the way the flowers die
is it the tides eating the beach all day and night

we search
we seek
we find nothing

the hope you tell me
exists somewhere
in some way
we’ll reach it
we’ll find it
somehow

I don’t hold on to hope
it seems pointless
as if impossible
to make a wish
and keep it
to dream for something better
to think the storm will end
when only every ending
starts a new front again

don’t tell me to hope
there isn’t any left
I’d rather be homeless
then continue this step

what is hope
you tell me
that’s the storm passing
the rain’s end
the light turning on at last

yet I find without the proper tools
the days go on forever
and yesterday
when we said it’s possible
we left that hope behind
and became again

what is hope
you ask me
and I tell you
it doesn’t exist

because why would something
change the path
against resistance

we’re fighting a rip tide
we’re being stolen away
our lives are no longer playful
they all know our names
and take that into heart
and beat us with sticks and rocks
as if hope means anything to us

what is hope
you tell me
the truth
is that hope is the change
we seek
but if we don’t turn the knob
or flick on the switch
hope doesn’t exist

don’t stand in the storm
and expect something to change
sure the weather changes
but it normally gets cold again
you hope for a difference
but it’s more likely than you think
requires your actions
the ones you’re afraid to make

what is hope
I’ll ask again
and I’ll say the same
hope doesn’t exist
and hard work means nothing


It’s a scattered poem with ups and downs. I was clearly facing with depression. I was both ‘I’, ‘you’, and ‘we’ in this poem. The battle wages on. Without hope there is nothing.

[Poetry Archive] [About Cat Hartliebe]

6 thoughts on “Poem: What is Hope?”

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