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  • Jameel Haiat

The Art of Perseverance

Not long ago, I did a podcast interview with @TheatreArtLife chatting about how I got to where I am today. I wrote an article titled "The Art of Perseverance" for their website, which speaks to my own personal experiences from a child on through to adulthood and how believing in oneself, even through doubt and pain, can lead to success and real happiness. Besides that, though, I was also inspired to create a poem that put those words into a different, more artistic, format...


I lived in LA, the city of Angels

As many would say

Just at the cusp

where people would play

To escape gangs and violence

To get far away

A gateway to hope, to a future

They’d pray

But just over the freeway

A few blocks from us

Shots would ring out

The tough would still roam

For the end of that street was too close to home

The pain and the rampage

Was not kept at bay

My family absorbed it, it came everyday

Their spirit too weak to just push it away

My Uncles from prison with us they would stay

The smell of their crimes

The stench of decay

Murder and mayhem

Assault and more pain

Filled our house with their habits

No remorse nor repay

My parents indulged it

They partook much the same

Their anger and rituals

Put blood on my face

The stress of just seeing them

Caused trauma and strain

What happens today?

Am I good or so bad?

My mind always raced

With what awaited that place

The violence persisted

It stayed there

It lay

My family inherited

This horrible fate

So I kept to myself

In my room I would stay

Writing and painting

My mind would replace

All the violence and horrors

With my own sweet soirées

I wiped back my tears

As they dried on my face

I did what I could

To elude their embrace

I created my own world

My own perfect space

My mind would just wander

Places far and away

This boy with the pain

Was committed to stay

So now I look back

At the bullies and blood

All the hurt and the horror

The anguish and strain

I replaced all the bad

With love and quatrains

My spirit is firm

My mind is now set

One way or another

I’ve had no regrets

I now am successful

I create and I thrive

That boy that existed

Who might have just died

He lives and he laughs

He loves and he plays

He consistently grasps

All the pain everyday

What was so much sickness

What had to have been

Created no monster

But made him again...



- Jameel Haiat

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