Broken Beauty

[View the animated video version of this poem on YouTube.]

Broken Beauty on YouTube

Glamour is a hollow, shiny shell,
a rapid, pretty paint job
on an insubstantial surface,
that alluringly promises much
but never satisfies the hunger.

True human beauty is internal,
from the depths of one’s core.
It starts in the heart and soul.
It slowly sprouts and spreads,
percolates and permeates
the exterior from within.

The best but bleakest beauty
grows from wisdom
wrestled and wrought
from woundedness.
Pain, a teacher of distinction,
comes to every one of us,
but only some students
embrace the lessons
and find meaning in affliction.

For perceptive learners,
crises cut and clear the clutter
from bloated, busy lives,
enabling the complex splendor
of sorrow and healing,
of tears and laughter,
of doubt and faith,
of truth and grace,
of peace and joy,
of love and compassion
to emerge from pruned spaces.

Copyright 2021 Mark D. Stucky.
Originally published in Small Town Anthology VII: Entries from the Seventh Annual Tournament of Writers (Vicksburg Cultural Arts Center, 2021).

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