"Autobiography in 5 Short Chapters" (a poem)

This beautiful poem reminds us that suffering can be a habit we fall into every day. To change this habit, we must first understand it. With this understanding we can transform our behaviour into something more nourishing.


In this process, the greatest gifts we can give ourselves are kindness, patience, and forgiveness.


I

I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk I fall in. I am lost … I am helpless. It isn’t my fault.


It takes me forever to find a way out.


II

I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I pretend I don’t see it. I fall in again. I can’t believe I am in the same place but, it isn’t my fault.


It still takes a long time to get out.


III

I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it is there. I still fall in … it’s a habit. My eyes are open I know where I am. It is my fault.


I get out immediately.


IV

I walk down the same street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.


I walk around it.


V

I walk down another street.


by Portia Nelson

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