I Have Three Needs

I’m grateful to my friends Casey and Kelly for invoking one of the poems I published in A Cadence of Despair. The context was the start of a listening circle, to hear stories of dear people in thoughtful noticing of their lives.

The poem speaks to needs. The poem speaks to a kind of clarity and claiming that took some time and some struggle before it arrived. The poem speaks to hungers that many of us have, and that perhaps at times, need deliberate exploring.

I Have Three Needs
Tenneson Woolf

I have three needs.


Wanting to feel vibrant.
Wanting to feel alive.
Wanting to feel awake.

Not, dimmed.
Not, protecting and conserving.
Not, sleepy in soul.

I’m also grateful for my friend Tom, who has been sharing his observation that some people are down to one or two remaining nerves, and that for some, these are exposed nerves. Tender. Vulnerable. In a way that tips people over the edge with small occurrences that they would otherwise handle well.

There is something cumulative among us.

That behooves us, I believe, to contribute with some added gentleness, to vibrant, alive, and awake together.

One Reply to “I Have Three Needs”

  1. This is lovely and reflects me, both my needs and the sometimes way I’ve reacted to life these days.

    My goal is to practice more patience, with myself first and others after.

    Thank you for your kind words.

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