It happens in every film.  It happens in every piece of literature.  It’s that moment when your back is against the wall.  You don’t know what else to do. You’re frozen and you can’t even breathe. 

You’re exhausted. There is barren land where hope used to grow.  Home is a faraway place that only exists in your memory. Maybe money is keeping you captive (or lack thereof.) Maybe someone is chasing you.

You had a plan. You executed it to the best of your ability. There was cause and effect. Desire fuels you. You stand there at the end of the line. You fought, you ran, but you have been cornered. There is nothing left to do.

No proverbial bullets left in the chamber…

You take a deep breath…


…and you say, “Here goes nothing!”


You take a chance at landing on your feet.  You take a “leap of faith” and all the while you are still holding your breath.  You have no idea what the outcome will be but you know what proceeded this trial.  You know you can fail.  You know this can be fatal.  What choice did you have? Fight or flight right? Some don’t understand your decision. Some don’t understand your loyalty. Some don’t understand your commitment or lack thereof. 

What happens if you stand and fight? What happens if you win? What happens if you claim your prize now? Do you deserve it? Did you earn it? Did you really do your best? Did you sacrifice? If it doesn’t “make you stronger” and it kills you, what will your legacy be? Do the people you love feel loved?

Are your feet bleeding from running, jumping, hiding? Are your legs sore? What if you stood in a fighting stance, left lead, fast jab and pursued your predators diligently?

Do you know?

Why don’t you find out?


Ready? Set. Stand. Fight.



“Love Is” (Based on 1 Corinthians 13:4-8)

Two dear friends of mine exchanged vows on September 14th. The following is the poem I performed at their ceremony.  May they be blessed abundantly!


Tribute to the bride and groom…


The earth cracked
And your laughter broke the deafening
You loved me passed my pain
You exude patience passed logic.

With kindness you explore the depths
Of my mind without judgement.
Envious of the air you breathe.
I boast about you and our family
Proud to be in your presence
Your gentle nature extends beyond

I find sanctity
When resting peacefully in your heart.
You protect my passion for life
You’ve taught me to persevere,
When I am weak or afraid.
You love me indefinitely and

You hold me with inexhaustible
You’ve replaced trails of tears with
laugh lines.
Emotionally exhausted from my retreat
From my resentment.
You were my dream come true.

You are my Utopia.
You are my staycation
You are my painkiller
You are my welcome mat
To wipe away worry
You are my composite work of art
You are my truth in a life of lies
You accelerate a journey of joy
And justify a past of displeasure.

Love is your smile
Love is your warmth
Love is your commitment.
Love never fails

– Shaun M Nickens