National Poetry Month: “All Our Bruised Bodies And The Whole Heart Shrinks”

The band is called La Dispute. This is one of my favorite songs because it makes me feel such strong emotions when listening to it. The words are so powerful. The stanza that starts every line with “Tell me…” speaks to me the most. In the end, I think this is a song about pain and how it’s inescapable in this world. Loss hurts. Death hurts. How do we cope when the world breaks us? How do we keep our faith? I like how the singer questions these things because it seems like he’s not sure. He doesn’t have it all figured out, and it’s nice not to feel alone in that sometimes.

~Sam Miller

“All Our Bruised Bodies And The Whole Heart Shrinks”

So now tell me how your story goes. Have you ever suffered?
If so, did you get better or have you never quite recovered from it?
Did you find your lover laying in your bedroom with another and then
Did you let it hover over you and everything else well after the fact?

Show me all your bruises. I know everybody wears them.
They broadcast the pain-how you hurt, how you reacted.
Did cancer take your child? Did your father have a heart attack?
Have you had a moment forced the whole heart to grow or retract?

Or just shrink.
Does the heart shrink?

Tell me everything. Tell me everything you know.

Were you told as a child how cruel the whole world can be?
Did anybody ever tell you that?
Tell me what your purpose is? Who it was that put you here and why?
Did anybody really put you here at all?
And what of those necessities? Like how to cope with tragedy and pain?
Did anybody ever show you how?
When it hits will my heart burst or break or grow strong?
Is there really only one way to know now?

I’m not sure if I’m ready yet to find out the hard way
How strong I am. What I’m made of.
I’m not sure I am ready yet to walk through the fire.
I’m not sure I can handle it.
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
And how long does it take?
Am I better off just bursting or breaking?
Because I don’t see my heart getting strong.

Tell your stories to me. Show your bruises.
Let’s see what humanity is capable of handling.

She lost her kid, only seven, to cancer.
She answered with faith in her god and carried on,
While he was attacked by his son and was stabbed in his stomach and his back and his arms.
He showed me scars.
82 years old, told me, “I still have my daughter and my wife. And I still have my life and my son.”

Tell me what your worst fears are. I bet they look a lot like mine.
Tell me what you think about when you can’t fall asleep at night.
Tell me that you’re struggling. Tell me that you’re scared. No,
Tell me that you’re terrified of life.
Tell me that it’s difficult to not think of death sometimes.
Tell me how you lost. Tell me how he left. Tell me how she left.
Tell me how you lost everything that you had.
Tell me that it ain’t ever coming back.
Tell me about God. Tell me about love.
Tell me that it’s all of the above.
Say you think of everything in fear.
I bet you’re not the only one who does.

Everyone in the world comes at some point to suffering.
I wonder when I will. I wonder.
Everyone is out searching for someone or something.
I wonder what I’ll find. I wonder.

Everyone in the world comes at some point to suffering.
I wonder when I will. I wonder.
Everyone is out searching for someone or something.
I wonder what I’ll find. I wonder.

I wonder what I’ll find, I wonder.

I wonder what I’ll find… [3x]

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