Do not put faith in the
Narratives of the past
Being the fortune tellers,
To your fate.

Do not believe the whispers
Of what ails you
And pulls you further away
From yourself.

Do not resign to the
Pitfalls and valleys
Of the past,
Marking the road
That is yet to be plowed.

You are not destined to follow
What lay in the rear view.
You are not fated upon what
Has been strewn before.

These are merely markings
On the path traversed.
They are temporary;
Way showers without maps.

They are stones on a hill
Valleys behind the ridge
Forks in roads and
Oghams carved in tree.

You dear heart are lead by
Well worn shoes
And feet that step
With ferocity,
And hopeful planted lands
From leaps.

Your past does not define you
Not the darkest of hours,
Nor the loneliest of sorrows.

Our landscape merely shows us
Points along the way,
Towards lessons,
Of birth, and decay,
Of burn and ash,
Of spark and flame,
Of wind and blaze, and you
Are all of these things.

Free to dream
Upon the grace of tomorrow,
The soothing balm
Upon the meadow’s breeze,
And the dawn on the horizon
Bringing hope of better things.
To live, to learn, to grow,
And to be.

-Angel Marie Russell
#poem #poet

Photo by Angel Marie Russell


Joy In The Underworld

It is so easy to forget
Surrounded by the chaos,
The noise,
The fleeting despondency
Of the blinded masses,
The knowing of joy.

How it slips so readily
From my heart
That goes cold
To stop the pain
From once again igniting.

Would that I could not feel
All that consumes me, as

Would that I could have no knowledge
Of the fear and of the aching.
In response, I turn off the fount.
I lock myself away;
A prisoner encased
In safety.

Oh Joy,
I see you out there
In the distance
With your army of mayhem
Dancing with folly and
Prancing haphazardly
In disarray.

I long to join the cavalcade.
But I’ve stolen my own heart
And locked it away.

Will you climb my ivory tower?
Will you break down the walls?
Will you pummel me senseless
With tears more of wonder
Than sorrow?
Can you even see me up here
Lamenting, grieving, and nursing wounds
For all that was stolen away?

Oh, my heart.
Can you trust in love again?
Can you ease the fortress
Into soliloquy and phosphorescence?
Can you slip into dream
And lay softly on the petals
Of the fragrant rose?

I beg you joy,
Defeat me.
Beat me into submission
Until laughter springs forth
From my frowns
And I am no longer wed
To Hades, to the darkness,
With no knowing of the Vale
Between the cavern and the
Song filled meadow,
Of suffering,
But take me to the temple
And wed me once again
To love.

-Angel Marie Russell


As I grow
I feel the transformation
In my face.
I feel the flesh recast
With being in this World,
Full of folly and disgrace,
Full of love and wonder,
And the knowledge of fear
And of pain.
And before my very eyes
The magic happens
Like it took eons of self discovery
And souls desire to choose
To keep jumping into the flames.
And once again the face reflects
All that I chose and all that rejects
And I ponder at the shame.
I almost laugh
This World that sees only flesh
And its decay,
Within is a road map of victory,
Of survival,
Of everytime conquer of every trial,
With the depth of a falcon staring into the abyss
Who would I be without a face such as this?
Would I truly allow you to quiet the life
From my face for your viewing pleasure only?
Would I really let this soul that shines
In each and every fineline be defined
By such that is fleeting?
My face is a cast of this heart
That is not only beating but soaring
Above all that hinders and harms,
Higher still beyond the flesh
And deep into blackened sky
Full of hope and love
And full of mystery
That I transform as the sun to carbon dust
And I am like the cosmos
That swirl and expand
And this my face tells the tale
Of all of that.
Would I truly allow shame to rest there?
In the temple wonder
Of star spark and black hole depths
Of these mine eyes
To reflect shame?
No my wondrous lifespark
You shine and weep
You glow and transmute this flesh
As the planets flux and expand
As the Earth Pulls at the tethers of my being.
And in this reflection
I see the perfection
Of the undying
Of love.

-Angel Marie Russell
#love #poet

I Believe In You

We forget that when we look back in time at heroes of civil rights movements, that they were people just like you and me. They were humans that just got fed up with the status quo, of turning their eyes to injustice.

It’s hard to see where they found the strength to rise above. It’s difficult to understand where they found the capacity to use their voice, actions, and perseverance to act when the odds were stacked against them.

When I look out at our society now I see all the injustice and all the pain. I realize that what we need now is that same spark. We too need to be FED UP. We too need to SPEAK OUT. We too need to find the discordant thread that weaves the tyranny throughout the system and we need to pull that sucker until it unravels.

We are the heroes we have been looking for. It is our doubt and fear that traps us. It is our reluctance to see courage in the mirror. It is our fear that keeps us imprisoned thinking, “Not me, but someone should speak up and out. Someone needs to do something.”

Why not you? Why not me? Why not us? Why are we any different? The answer could be in you, in me, and in us.

Do you believe in being the change? Do you believe in standing up and fighting for what is right? The time has come my beautiful friends.

We are at a crossroads. We look out and we see horror. We feel numb and are losing hope, but I want you to remember. . . I want you to see that there were people then, just like there are people now, who ROSE UP.

I call on you to remember your strength and your honor, to remember that your voice matters, that there is a hero in every single one of us. The only thing keeping us held back is belief.

I believe in you.
I believe in you to fight for what is right.
I believe in you to rise up and refuse to accept injustice as the status quo.
I believe in you to refuse to be distracted by misdirection.
I believe in you to see with eyes that see.
I believe in you to use your heart over your indifference.
I believe in you to be so affected by the pain of others that you rise up in unison to say NO MORE!!!
I believe in us.

Do you?

-Angel Marie Russell


Pleading For Spring

The return of Persephone, by Frederic Leighton (1891)

When we operate from our wounds,
We lose our center.
We forget the majesty of our own hearts.

When we feel, oh. so. much.
It sweeps us under; the pain.
It makes us forget who we are.
It takes us to places
We never thought ourselves
Capable of.
We lash out.
We cry out.
Please! Just make it stop!
Take the pain from me!
Or I will take me from all else!
And we downtrodden, dejected, wounded,

And then we seek from a lack.
We look to fill what aches,
We grab and we reach
For anything we can grasp,
And we vortex into syclone,
Into black hole syphon tail spin,
We lose ourselves in the abyss
Of this pain.

This world we live in that breathes
With agony, of the suffered,
The suffering ignored, repeatedly,
Invalidated, we plummet deeper still
We each,
Persephone pleading for Spring.

Our hearts ache to remember that
Even in darkness
We can find the light.
Even in the shadowlands
There is a glow.
Right in our own hearts.
And the pain of this life
May have taken the flame
From your fiery heart.
But I see the embers,
Still smoldering, red hot,
Waiting to blaze once again.

And yes, it may feel as though the
World takes and takes,
Until there is nothing left.
But let me remind you,
Nothing and no one, can take you
Away from the truth,
That you are love.
And once remembered,
You too, even underworld deep,
With wings unfurled
Will burst aflame once again.

-Angel Marie Russell

Thief of Joy

I’ve lost joy again.
How is it such a swift depart?
How does its presence so mysteriously
Disembark from my journey?
How is it here sparkling mad with content
And furrowed brow the next?

I know of great things,
Of beauty, pain, sorrow, of healing, and
The rise above through love.
I know we are.
I know you are as I am.
I see I know nothing but one truth
Love creates all
It is the fabric with which all
Has been woven
Time immemorial

And yet my knowledge
Does not cure the ache.
Because to be awake means
Seeing suffering
Plain as day in every heart.
Blinded to the love that
Springs from their well spring
Untapped, led astray,
Suffering as are we all in life.

If suffering is indeed the path to awakening.
Where are the woke folks singing praises
When the thief of joy, sorrow, arrives.
I know we are love.
And I feel such a great weight
From that knowledge
I suffer knowing the nature of love
And the lack of people willing to really feel.
It hurts, so we run, we run in fear,
From love.

And the cycle repeats.
On and on.
Until we ask the right questions.
What is love?
Really, what is this thing we call love?
Every answer led me to another.
Every answer led me to question more.
Every answer led me to myself.
I am as you are.
I am love.
I am.

There is no sentence, penance, punishment, guilt, self loathing, isolating, or act
That can make you ready for love.
You already are love.
Right now as you are.
You are worthy,
Right now,
Covered in snot and hiding in the alley.
So, if that’s true,
Why do I still weep?
Who is the thief of joy?
I care so deeply to change the world,
The injustice of it all threatens to break me.
And I crumble apart once again
To find the fibers that lead me back to love.
This is life
This dance
I lose joy to find my
Way back to love.
To see it never truly left me
And will always come round again.

-Angel Marie Russell


Be kind
In your mind
To yourself.

Find the root
Of the thorny branch
That snags to your self worth,
That traps you,
Thinking you
Are less.

We beings made of matter,
Energy, thought, and expanse.
We who laugh, tear up, and want
So much for love.

We forget the power
The nature of love itself.
The treasure resting in each
And every heart,

The fount that never ends,
The pulse with which
We all dance,
There is love.

We blinded by folly,
Unaligned malintent,
Operate from a perceived lack
Of love.

But it is there,
In every sigh,
In every aching heart,
A well spring,

You are the essence
Of love made flesh.
It rests in your breath,
And in each finger tip swirl.

And yes, we sway
From pain to pleasure,
From misstep to surefootedness
We the haphazard and fallible,
There is love.

Be kind
In your mind
And find love
Never left you.

It waits ever ready
For you to realize,
You are love.
You are love made manifest.

Do not believe the lie,
Of the emptiness

-Angel Marie Russell