Nearing the End of an Era

With the release of my debut chapbook and now my first full-length poetry collection out, I feel I am finally nearing the end of an era, which began two years ago. In 2019, I began my spiritual journey, though, perhaps in more ways than one, I chose this path for myself long before I consciously became aware of it.

In 2019, I wrote the most I had ever written only to turn away from writing altogether.

In 2020, poetry poured out of me. I left my job as an Instructional Assistant working at a preschool and wrote during the height of the pandemic.

Now, in 2021, I write with a renewed sense of understanding on my path.

Publishing both my chapbook and collection was an action forged in trust because, at the end of the day, I released these books for myself, only to realize I released them for all of you — the stranger, the familiar friend off in the distance. I believe, in more ways than one, we’ve met on a soul-level even if I’ve never stood physically across from you.

During the height of a deep depression, I grappled with my meaning in the world. I longed to understand what my words were worth if they could not be planted in the world in the manner in which I had always desired them to be. It took a bit of time to build myself up, piece by piece, until I remembered my meditation and truth, which has always been a part of me.

At the height of those unconscious, seeing moments, I listened to the muse and I listened to all the great voices of those who came before me. I listened to the myth of Psyche and, perhaps most importantly, I listened to myself.

In the silence, devoid of any expectations for my life, I found peace. I emptied myself of everything I thought I knew about myself and listened to my soul.

Now, as I pursue my dreams wholeheartedly, I choose myself and these words pressed to the page again and again.

Maybe, you’ll join me and find some words for yourself.

-Ilyssa

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