When do you let it go
Or employ it with a flourish
The past it shapes you, now and in times to come

When do you come to a stop
Or push beyond
The pain so recurrent, the suffering your choice

When do you follow it
Or take the alternate path
The beat a ever-guiding, or conventional too much

When do you eat it
Or wait for more and save
Marshmallow soft and tasty, sticky coloured stuff

When do you make a change
Or stubbornly stand your ground
Evolution constantly - or holding back the waves

Lying or a truthing
Each one it has its time

Destination or the journey
We circle round again

Idealism, cynicism
Have moments here and there

Waiting, coming, going
We may do without a care

There is a moment to destroy
So much still to create
Multiple voices or just one
The option always awaits

Then an instant when to share
Or out of sight a time to hide
Black or white or grey or colour
Song of palette, dance of brush

And smiling, frowning or mouth quite straight
Emotions felt, passion disloyal
Fear and hope they ring their bells
Rhyme and reason sometimes clang

Experience teaches, innocence drives

Come each instant in our lives

When we draw upon the lesson
When we rise, and fall again
When the dawn quits every night
When we fight and reconcile
We simply move, in a complex world
Searching the meaning

The image was created by Esra Gumrukculer for this poem which was published in Sauti: Poems of Healing, contributed by UN staff for World Mental Health Month 2020