Guest Post: Heal Your Spirit with Poetry (and a Cup of Coffee) in 30 Seconds by Xueyan

Welcome to today’s guest post from Xueyan, author of the poetry collection Time Peels All to Original White.

Book Synopsis:

Xueyan, the young poet who explores the infinite will in her own free soul, forcefully expresses her original and powerful vision in ways that reinvent traditional concepts of spirituality and common culture.

With modern settings and contemporary language, topics include the sacred and eternal, the nature of God, the existence of evil, the brutality of capitalism, the loneliness of existence, the ecstasy of intimacy, and the ubiquitous reach of love.

The collection’s 139 concise and deeply spiritual poems lay bare humanity’s most jarring mysteries and contradictions, exposing their raw essence with startling simplicity in ways that transcend borders, cultures, races, and beliefs.

Please welcome Xueyan today as she shares with us the healing power of poetry:

A good poem is like a nice cup of coffee: the liquid may stay on your taste buds for a short time, but it can refresh your spirit for a long time. As a poet who enjoys writing sharp lines, I think reading poetry and drinking coffee together is a perfect combination of spiritual and physical pleasures.

There is a classic question that is asked throughout the ages and still there is no single answer to which everyone agrees: Is life beautiful?

Is life beautiful? Looking around the world, there is chaos, there is cruelty, there is crying. However, I still believe life is beautiful because I believe in the cleansing power of the heart. Even if you inhale hate and gloom, if you have a clean heart, you will exhale love and light.

In my own way, I’d love to offer 3 hacks for experiencing life’s healing beauty.

Let your imagination release hidden possibilities and care for overlooked things

As a poet, I enjoy depicting the elements of the universe in my own way, instead of searching for scientific explanations through those complex formulas filling science books as thick as bricks.

How to depict fog? Scientists probably would cite a list of data about water and temperature and the chemistry between them, but I would depict fog in a mysterious way.


Woods longing for water

Dewy dreams twine slumberland

How to depict the night sky? I am not fully aware of the theories of Galileo and Bruno and their illustrious successors. When I was a kid, for my breakfast, my mother would drop a yummy poached egg over hot tomato noodles. I enjoyed that dish so much, I decided to compare the night sky to a yummy egg.

Night Sky Is a Dark Egg

Yolk is shining

Whites are floating

Moon and cloud

The navel is probably the most overlooked part of our bodies; we care about our hair and our nails, we dye them with different colors. Nobody cares about the poor navel, regardless of the global truth that the umbilical cord nourished us when we were in our mother’s womb. As a poet, I want to sing an ode to the navel.

Soul and Star

Stars shoot into our bodies and become souls

Navels are meteorite craters

Embrace dark memories and transcend them into poetry

How can we know light without experiencing darkness? Do I have dark memories? If the phrase “dark memories” refers to suffering from war or famine, then I should feel lucky and say I don’t have dark memories. But if the phrase “dark memories” refers to sorrows which evoke tears, then I can share a little story of mine.

When I was a kid, I walked to primary school every day and, on the way, there was a small garbage station. One day after school, as I was walking past the garbage station as usual, I heard plaintive-like yelping emanating from a paper box lying just outside the station. I was attracted by the cream-in-milk doggie sounds and I wanted to take a look. I approached the box and discovered a little yellow puppy huddling inside. Feeling pity for this poor thing, I decided to carry it home and take care of it. With my mother’s permission, I put a blanket on the balcony to settle the puppy and fed it some bread and milk. I still vividly recall how its furry little head brushed against my palm and how happy it was when it rolled on the blanket.

I named this puppy 金子 (JinZi), meaning Little Gold; even though I picked it from a trash station, to me it was as precious as gold. The next morning, I fed it more food, then went to school as usual. While in class, I thought about JinZi and I planned to take her to the park on the weekend to stroll. After school, I went to supermarket to buy some bacon for the puppy; the money I spent on bacon was the money I had saved to buy books.

I hurried home only to discover that JinZi, my little puppy, was gone. My mother told me that my father sent JinZi away because he was worried that the puppy would bite and bark. I cried, begging my father to tell me where he had sent JinZi, but my father refused to answer me. From then on, every time I passed by the garbage station, I would stop for a while, hoping the little yellow puppy, my JinZi, would be there waiting for me…

Even though, since then, so much time has flashed by, whenever I think about this poor little lovely creature… my heart still sinks, I grow a little sad. Here is a poem of mine which I think expresses the “bitter beauty” of dark memories… I embrace my dark memories and transcend them into poetry…

My Eyes Are Big Yet Small

Though my eyes can hold infinity

They cannot hold your tears

Awaken your inner poet by breathing with a clean heart

Is it easy to write poetry? If the only poems that can qualify as poetry are those as long as Shakespeare’s or Goethe’s, then I think such a judgment would limit the vitality of poetry.

I once wrote that “Poetry is the breath of the heart”; if your heart is as clear as crystal, then the words that your heart exhales are poetry…

For example, when I wrote my poem Angel, I imagined the dim reflection of the profile of an angel shining on a moonlight crystal…Rose blossoms with tearful yearning for pure love as starlight feathers fall from heaven…


Your sigh

Makes the moon rises

My poem is short, but if the hearts of readers are touched by it, then I think it is good poetry. In my opinion, good poetry should be like a lightning sword of the highest purity diamond.

To experience life’s healing beauty and to express it in the form of poetry is like breathing with a crystal-clear heart and letting words of love and light exhale from your heart as simply as watching wine overflowing from the holy cup when it is full…

Thank you, Xueyan, for sharing your poems and your insight.

About the Poet:

Xueyan lives in China. Her poems have been published in Ginosko Literary Journal and the Bangalore Review.

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