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Smiling Alone
Rhyme and Reason
Asif Iftikhar

Smiling Alone1


The strength to be weak

       to see oneself

       -- one’s weakness

       and to accept it -- in front of everyone


The strength to change, to move on -- against the tide -- all alone

The strength to demolish -- that which one had built

       in many long years

       with one’s own hands

       in great pain and with great love


And the strength to dream -- once again

The strength to build again

       to demolish again

       and to dream -- yet again


The ambition to achieve -- nothing

The ambition to make the effort

And the heart to see that -- as achievement


The courage to lose, and to see that -- as triumph

The courage to bear -- persecution, banishment

And the power to take revenge --

       by forgiving

       and loving

       and giving


The gift of giving -- one’s own self

       without letting anyone know

       and of smiling alone




1. For your sake, Lord.

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