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A short compilation of poems Foreword by singer/songwriter
…honest, emotional, inspiring…
BY JOANNA JAYAPRAKASH
Table of Contents
About the Writer………………………………….…………………………..…………2 Foreword by Juwita Suwito .................................................................................. 3
Poems: Love Actually...…………………………………………………………………..4 Love is Not Blind……..………………………………………………………….5 Falling in Love……………………………………………………………………6 If One Day………………………………………………………………………..7 Focus My Dear…………………………………………………………………..9 Chatting With the Devil………………………………………………………..10 The Strangest Way……………………………………………………………...11 Don‟t Ask Me How I Was……………………………………………………..12 Wounds From a Friend………………………………………………………...14 The Child in Me………………………………………………………………...15 A World Like Theirs…………………………………………………………….16 The Forbidden Fruit…………………………………………………………....18 Life……………………………………………………………………………….20 The Things People Do…………………………………………………………24 Take Me To Places I‟ve Never Been……………………………………….…28
2 About the Writer
Joanna Jayaprakash is a 26 year old Malaysian. Growing up as a soft-spoken and rather quiet girl, she had a lot of questions in her mind. She drew her strength from within as she searched for the meaning of life. This compilation is about aspirations, disappointments, betrayal, friendship, love and hope. On her journey to understand living, her poems reflect her experiences, observations, choices and answers she has found along the way.
Honest, emotional, inspiring – these words
sum up her theme. She has obtained an Honors Degree in Business
Multi Media University, Malaysia. Subjects studied include English Writing, Psychology, Social Studies, Human Behavior, Moral and Ethics – that further influence her views. She is also involved in the local Young Women‟s Christian Association (YWCA), coordinating youth programs. Her writing has been published in YWCA Newsletter, Blue Triangle, December 2008. She currently works in the management field. She enjoys writing both fiction nonfiction. She can be contacted via email@example.com.
3 Foreword by Juwita Suwito
From the opening verses, Joanna‟s Secrets of a Young Heart warmed my heart and made me smile. Her words will turn you around when the daily grind has gotten you numb.
Thank you Joanna, for sharing with us your deepest thought and sentiments. In a world where we get more „connected‟ yet impersonal, you have bared your soul to a point where others are able to uncover nuggets of real emotion – to a point perhaps, of our own self-realization.
I trust you (the reader) will uncover secrets of life as you delve into „Secrets of a Young Heart‟. They are truly honest, emotional and inspiring.
Juwita Suwito is very talented professional singer / songwriter. Her debut solo album, ‘Brand New World’ was declared Best Local English Album at the prestigious AIM (Malaysian Music Industry) Awards. Being an acclaimed singer, she is very humble and passionate about making a difference in society. She has represented Malaysia at the YWCA World Council & International Women’s Summit in Brisbane, Australia, and is currently Steps Ambassador, fighting the spread of HIV/AIDS. You can visit her blog at
Love is not just a feeling, That makes you float on clouds in the sky, With angels strumming the harps, Or Cupid‟s arrows speeding by. Love is not just an emotion, That blossoms under the moon lit sky, When lovers clasp hands together, Or when feelings run wild and high. Love is when you show you care, In little things everywhere, Everyday a choice to make, Without condition, whatever it takes. When anger floods within your soul, Love is the power that takes control, When sadness starts to tear you down, Love is like the smile on a cheerful clown, When disappointments come your way, Love is the light that gives you hope. When all there is are faults and wrongs, Love is the only thing that sees beyond. Love accompanies to the valleys below, And supports you right up the peak above. And when you feel you cannot go on, Love is like the life-jacket, That won‟t let you drown. Love is a heart to serve, Like honor and respect, It is a gift to others, No strings attached. Love is walking the extra mile, Even a little could change lives, Love is less of me, And more of you.
Love is Not Blind
Love is not blind, It sees the flaws, It feels the hurts, But it chooses to look beyond. Love is not deaf, It hears the scorn, It bears the shame, But it decides to mute yet listen on. Love is not dumb, It can scream if it wants, And lash back with the tongue, Yet it is silent till the sun comes down. Love is not a fool, While it may seem slow, It is just being patient, Till you are ready to move. Love is not weak, It can push you to the front, Make you sprint and run, Yet it won‟t force but make it your want. Love is not fearful, It can rise when it has to, Defend when it needs to, Yet it yearns for you. Love is not a loser, It steps back and gives in, Sacrifices to save your skin, But that‟s just the way love wins. Love is everywhere, Even when you didn‟t know, It has always cared, And love will carry you there.
Falling In Love
Love is like water and fire, At different times, Cool and soothing, Keeps you warm in the cold, Yet powerful, Devouring. Insatiable, Yet fulfilling, Gives you a hope that will never die, To live and also sacrifice, Makes you cry in the middle of the night, And when your pillow can swallow no more, It wipes your tears dry, When it's gone, It remains a memory, If it lasts, It is forever.
If One Day
If one day, Your handsome face loses its charm, Your magnificently toned muscles disappear, And your skin becomes wrinkled, In your eyes I'll see the twinkle Of love and compassion, Not the loss of your youth, Or superficial possessions.
If one day, You are haunted by sickness and death, And life is a painful journey, Every single breath I'll be there to hold your hand and stay by your side.
For you I‟m willing, Without doubt or shame, To go the distance whatever it takes, For I know that for me,
You would do the same. We shall enjoy the days of our youth together, Hand in hand, Gracefully shall we age, All the way strengthening each other, We‟ll pen the diary of life, Page by page.
I‟ll share your pride and joy, And wipe away your tears in days of sadness, When there is darkness, I‟ll brighten your day, And color your world, When all you see is blankness.
If one day, The sun refuses to shine by day, And the oceans become dry My heart will still be with you, Because I know for sure That our love is real.
Focus My Dear
Focus my dear, The path is very long, The road may not be smooth and easy, But promise me, You must be strong. Focus my dear, When you feel your world is tearing apart, And your ears ring with a sad song, Even when you don‟t feel smart, Sing praises in your heart, And you will find your misery, Won‟t last very long. Focus my dear, So much is happening, The world is revolving, The clock is ticking, Nothing will halt to wait for you, Don‟t stop and waste time, Just pass them through. Focus my dear, Your responsibilities are many, So you have to be trustworthy, You are steward over all His gifts, There is so much for you to give. Focus my dear, Don‟t revel in melancholy, That is not your destiny, Choose to be happy, Only then can you love with sincerity. You are my greatest enemy, You are my closest friend, So, focus my dear, For I‟m stuck with you till the end.
Chatting With the Devil
If I wanted to know the Devil, You said I was talking to one, Around the world, You have traveled, And met all kinds of people, Under the sun. It‟s amazing how you could guess, The thoughts inside my head, And seemed to understand, Things I had not yet said. Your eyes are always observing, Your ears trained in listening, Your mind is constantly analyzing, And you lack no words in speaking. It‟s a skill I wish I had, You make perfect company, It is a gift from God, Which cannot be bought with money, It can be used for good or bad. A devil you may claim to be, But that‟s not what my eyes did see, A caring heart, That did no harm, Genuine enough, To admit the truth. That‟s what love does, At least to someone, It considers an acquaintance. The art of war would say, Beware of what you don‟t know, To your unidentified foe, Never reveal your weak spot, Because the devil may approach, And hit you hard on that dot. But in the little that I have known, About the so called devil, I newly found, You did not exploit my vulnerability, As a trap to keep me in, Instead you cared enough, To guide and make me see, Issues in life, I had not dealt with. I may not know that very much, About that devil with two horns, And a creepy hood, But I think I know enough, To take the risk and say, You can be a friend I could trust, And that devil is just a mask, That hides the things, That make you good.
The Strangest Way
It could be the look in the eye, Or the curve of the lips that form a smile, It could be the firm handshake, Or a glance from behind the back, It may be a thought that was said, Or a business card exchanged, In the simplest way, An acquaintance is found that day. It could be the first phone call, That focused on business inquiry, Or perhaps how questions evolve, That leaves one dumbfounded, Should I say it is impressive? Or simply arousing curiosity, But in the most extraordinary way, A friend is found that day. Though being worlds apart, Through further interaction, There actually is a lot in common, Even having met only once, You know you want to care, When the other is not there, In the happiest way, A friend still resides in your heart. Whatever that is said, Be it bringing pleasure, Or causing discomfort and pain, You know that will not cut, The bond that has been formed. Because in the kindest way, Advice is taken and shortcomings overlooked. When there is care, Respect follows, You decide what is best, For the other one, And it becomes the right thing to do, In the most unexpected way, Love in friendship wins the race. Wherever the road leads, A friend is always there, Praying for only the best, To overwhelm you life, Even if there is gloom, You know it‟s just a test, That you will pass by the days, And you can be sure, That in the strangest way, Your friend is here to stay,
Don’t Ask Me How I Was
The week that was, Was a struggle within, I was searching, So unsure of everything. My dreams were many, But my resources were few, And what was I striving for? I no longer knew. The sky is the limit, The road is long, But where was my patience? My heart played only a sad song. My aspirations were high, But my faith was rather cold, My feelings were a tempest, That seemed beyond control. I knew it was a phase, That I would soon get over, Alone, I thought I would walk it, But, alone, it should not be so. I took the time to be still, To calm my troubled soul, To quiet my mind to focus, To depend on Him alone.
It's amazing how He works, With a complicated heart like mine, Showing me that I need no more, Than to know He is with me all the time. Of how I felt in the week that was, I feel utterly ashamed, To know He's always there, And yet, my heart untamed. But I am glad that I am aware, He'll always meet me in my prayer, So don't ask me how I was, my friend, Ask me how I am.
Philippians 4:6-7 (New Living Translation) "Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your heart and mind as you live in Christ Jesus."
Wounds from a Friend
There are a few, Who get to know you, For just a day or two, From there acquaintance blossoms, Into something beautiful. When the road is smooth and easy, Your companion is beside, When it gets a little bumpy, He helps to take it in your stride. Suddenly the drizzles drop, Torrents pour and lightings bolt, Will your friend his umbrella share, Or will he leave without a care? Might he instead lead the way, To a shelter not too far away? While you remain drenched in the cold, He proceeds to a sunny place untold. In solitude your mind wanders, From comradeship so enviable, To that stabbing moment, Of unthinkable betrayal. Perhaps he had his reasons, He did not want to tell, Or was he simply selfish, He did not want you there. To trust again, Would you even dare, It is known that true friends are rare, But without trust life is bare. The road is long, And the path is rough, To move on, You know you must. God works in mysterious ways, Always for a reason, People say, Yet you feel this is His game, He enjoys making you play. To this place you have been sent, The facts do not make you smile, But God says you will soon comprehend, “Have faith in Me, my child.”
James 1:3 & 4 “For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything.”
The Child in Me
I love the stories of childhood days, Of happily ever-after fairy tales, Of a princess and a knight, In the castle, woods or garden, Of a lingering romance, Under the starry night. I love those cartoon and animations, Nemo, Dorry, Peter Pan and Tinkerbell, Sweet creatures in the castle, sea, or jungle, Striving for freedom, Childishness and rebellion, Covered by friendship and love. I love knowing I was once a child, Able to dream beyond what meets the eye, When the moon peered through the dark sky, When the pillow comforted the little head, In my own world I found adventure. In reality where the sun shines brightly, Ideal plans fall upon the ground so stony, Sometimes it rains, And darkness looms a little too long But when the sunshine returns, Beautiful colors arch the sky, Come what may, I won‟t forget, As age catches up, I will try not to have regrets. But the child in me, Would still like to dream and wish, For the many things untold.
1 Corinthians 13:11 (Good News Bible) When I was a child, my speech, feelings, and thinking were all those of a child; now that I am an adult, I have no more use for childish ways.
A World like Theirs
Bewildered, I watch her fingers twist, Her sleek black hair, Into bouncy curls, Her eyes invite glances, Her touch infuses with desire. He is not the only one, Yet to each she crafts an illusion, Of the victim she has been, By cheating hearts, Making her a lonely lass. Disheartened, I see him discard, Years delicately woven together, For momentary pleasure, And when all is said and done, Return to unwitting arms, With romantic eyes, To her who endears him, “My darling, my love,” Caressing innocent little faces, Who barely reach his knees, Only to unashamedly continue, Those forbidden dreams.
Concerned, I give my hand when she stumbles, Hoping she will be humbled, By a past that gripped no substance, But like never ending waves, That return to lick the shore, There‟s no turning back, She demands for more, Why would she refuse? When he comes back, With promises of a cruise. Disillusioned, I learn to shed pretences, And not feign that it‟s alright, To see them change colors, In different shades of light, I choose to detach, From the colorful charade, Playing before my very eyes, I cannot belong, To a world like theirs.
Romans 12:2 (Good News Bible)
Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of Godwhat is good and is pleasing to Him and is perfect.
The Forbidden Fruit
When I ponder over the vices and virtues, That I stumble upon life‟s passageway, Of predators and preys, Temptations and choices, It hurts to wonder if it could, Ever had been another way. Sometimes I blame Eve real bad, In the Garden of Eden, If she had never eaten, Of that forbidden fruit, From that tree, Of Knowledge of Good and Evil, Of all sorts of sin and pain, We would have been spared. And then my thoughts go to Adam, Why did he just stand and stare? Could he not have stopped her? And helped to save the day? He was just as curious, The forbidden fruit tasted sweeter, The urge he could not bear. Then I asked God my humble question, With all Your Power, Could you not have destroyed Satan? Why did You leave that Tree there? Expecting mere humans, Your Rules not to bend. And then God seemed to answer, In a still voice within my soul, “I made you human in every way,” Not a robot I want to control, I love you with an everlasting love, But to love me in return, Is something you must choose.”
“My Commandments may be harsh, But it is meant to keep you safe, You can‟t do it by yourself, My Spirit will give you the strength, When people sin they pay the price, But My discipline is for the best.” I correct those I love, So that they will not stray, Along the condemned way, That leads to Hell.” Although I confess, Some things are hard to swallow, He did not mind me being shallow, And said to me, “My child, You will fail to comprehend, With your feeble mind, All my Purposes and my Plans, But someday you will see, Your Maker face to face.”
The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die."
Genesis 1: 15-17
Life a gift, You don‟t fully get to choose, Where, when or how, The end or the beginning, The joy or the suffering, It is given to you, Just be true. Life is a responsibility, You are entrusted with resources and gifts It‟s up to you what you do with it, You pay the price if you are silly, You see the fruits if you are wise. Life is a journey, The phases are many, From birth, childhood and youth, Adulthood to golden years, Singlehood and marriage, Learning, working, Family raising, Living and dying, You can‟t rewind or fast forward, Take them as they come. Life is a race, It‟s a struggle to keep up, With the constant changes taking place,
It takes discipline and faith, Courage to go on, Perseverance when you don‟t feel strong, So run with blazing determination, Give it all that you‟ve got, To win the prize at the finishing line, Where everything will work out fine. Life is a risk, You toil and work, To earn a living, Not knowing what lies ahead, To be safe, You may forgo the adventure, When the paths diverge, And the future is unclear, So it‟s only worth, To serve a loving Master, Who can guide your ways, Beyond your head. Life is a choice, With the will to do what‟s wrong or right, To whine or be contented, To despair or hope, To rot or grow, To hate or love, To take or give. To die or live, Just do what‟s best, So you can look back,
With little or no regrets. Life is a quest, There is much to learn, Tons for exploration, Millions beyond comprehension, Even the basic difference, Between men and women, Much more complicated, Is to understand, The self, But don‟t let that stop you, From asking, seeking and knocking, For someday you shall find. Life is love, Forgive yourself of all mistakes, Grant yourself a chance for the best, Pardon others for their faults, And time will heal the rest. Guilt is painful, Grudge is a great weight, And revenge is self-consuming, Because anger is never-ending. Only when you let go, Can you give more than you take, It‟s easy to like the sweet, The challenge is when they aren‟t so nice, But to love is the only way to life.
Life is the present, Here and now, Enjoy the moment, Envision the future, Love with no measure, If you look behind, Make sure it‟s just to see, How you can make it better, Otherwise, It could hurt real bad, And hold you back, So just shut up and move on. Life is precious, Because you only have one shot, If it‟s good and long, Praise the Lord, Well it could be short, So plan in sight of immortality, But live as if it were your last, Because from dusk till dawn, That‟s all you‟ve got.
Ecclesiastes 5:19-20 (New Living Translation)
And it is a good thing to receive wealth from God and the good health to enjoy it. To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life – that is indeed a gift from God. People who do this rarely look with sorrow on the past, for God has given them reasons for joy.
The Things People Do
In fields of gold, Sweat streams down, The forehead of a man, Etched by journeys of toils, Of sowing in the sun, A smile curves across his face, While reaping the works of his hands, To feed the ones he loves, Across lands of paddy. In seas of darkness, The net is thrown, The rod is cast, The bait is taken, The catch is contained, The bigger the better, The heavier the wealthier, The fisherman rides home, To the ones for whom he provides. Between the shadows, Of trees of milk, A silhouette of a woman, Emerges with empty pails, While the world is still in bed, With a bandanna on her head,
She taps the barks, Till her pails are filled, With liquid that in turn, Will pay her bills. In spaces of the elite, From concrete structures in the sky, Not a day passes without a touch, Of the keypads on the mobile, Or the magic screen, That connects an individual, To the entire world, Tracking the incessant changes, Where mistakes are intolerable, For the city never sleeps, And huge sums are at stake. In fearsome sounds of the woods, A man stays vigil through the night, Armed with weapons, In ambush position, In service of protection, Against the enemy, For innocent lives, The uniform is his pride, Courage is his light. In the room of coats of white, The lady stays on call,
For blood may stream in anytime, Expectant mothers waiting, A life is hanging on the line, An accident, catastrophe, Fire or emergency, Whatever the need, She is there to meet. In a student‟s room, The books are devoured, The notes are highlighted, The brains do not rest, Till assignments are done, And the scholar is equipped, To score the highest grade, For the test. On a quiet street, A vagabond roams the side-walk, No place to rest his head, Only the clothes on his skin, Are his prized possessions, With no friend or kin, Loneliness consumes him, But he strives on, Fighting for survival. In a crowded place, A stranger in a foreign land,
Searches for a familiar face, When he finds one, The whole world seems to settle in, Just the thought that someone there, Lifts away the cares. In the heart of the young, The night never dies, Sparkling beverages quench thirst, Emotions run high, Lovers cuddle together, The party lights go on forever, Like tomorrow never comes. In the mind of the old, For how much longer, Will time hold the fragile frame, That has weathered sunshine, And torrents of rains, That is the question, As the eyes close, Remembering days gone by.
Ecclesiastes 5:18 (New Living Translation) Even so, I have noticed one thing, at least, that is good. It is good for people to eat well, drink a good glass of wine, and enjoy their work – whatever they do under the sun – for however long God lets them live.
Take Me to Places I’ve Never Been
Lord, I want to bow at Your feet, Consecrate me, Let my heart be free of all sin, Hiding deep within, Where only You can see. Unto Your throne, Let me fix my gaze, As your warm my life with Your embrace, There‟s nothing I want more, Than to see Your glory, Reflected on my face. Won‟t You speak to me clearly Lord, Not in riddles so difficult to comprehend, Speak like You did with Moses, Or in a dream with Joseph, Or in the heart with David. Or through a stranger or a friend. You are God and You are King, You made the world, And every living thing, The birds that sing, The trees so green, They skies and beyond, The ground and there under. You grant intellect, And raise such amazing architecture, All kinds of instruments, With the talents You gave humans, And the games people play, Both elegant and vibrant dances, Even the music that rocks, You are not a spoilsport. So, teach me to enjoy You, When I write, Let Your words flow through, With my voice, Let me sing for You, When I draw, Let me capture Your art, When I dance, Let it be more than just my feet, When I run, Be the air I breathe, Tell me to play, And add some fun to my days, To get out of my comfort zone, So that I will serve and grow. Take me to places I‟ve never been, To greater heights I‟ve ever seen, Further down, To share in Your suffering, That I may be proven, Faithful and true.
Psalm 139: 23-24 (New Living Translation) Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.
I Corinthians 13:13 There are three things that will endure – faith, hope and love – and the greatest of these is love.
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