I Forgot Who I Was


I woke up one day feeling powerless & caged.
I felt lost and afraid, it was freedom I craved!

I felt like no one loved me & I was all alone.
I felt young & lost, but I’m fully grown.

Beat down by life & my own mind.
I let myself down and I started to drown.

I could not see tomorrow
& felt like I could barely get through the day.

I don’t know who I am anymore,
like my memory started to fade.

Deep down inside I know I used to be strong,
then I remember that I have been strong all along.

I might have slipped,
I might have fell.

I have to stand up,
I have to prevail.

I must be fearless,
I must be strong.

It’s a mental battle
and I’ll make it home!


  1. Lisbeth on May 7, 2019 at 7:33 AM

    I really liked the way your poem had a rhythm . It really made me feel like if I was telling myself this . I can see that you already are thinking positively about how much better it will get . I know it will because I used to tell myself the same thing and it has gotten better and it will for you too .

  2. David Irvine on May 7, 2019 at 10:04 AM

    A great read with a thought provoking journey, The content really flows and makes you feel warm inside.

  3. KD on May 15, 2019 at 4:26 AM

    HW, this poem is so good! I can tell you’ve experienced so many challenges, perhaps more than most; however, you write with so much hope and determination. I’m impressed and inspired by your work.

  4. John on March 21, 2020 at 12:06 AM

    I want you to know that somebody does love you. Trust God and He will bring you brighter days. God bless you.

  5. Kayelynn on April 15, 2020 at 9:11 AM


    I’m happy that you haven’t let those negative moments in life take away your hope for better days. Your message of perseverance and strength is admirable and your words to convey that message are beautiful as well. Keep your head held high and I’d love to read more poetry from you!

  6. James C on April 29, 2020 at 2:47 PM

    This is a powerful poem, HW. Sometimes struggling with mental health and identity seems like a battle with oneself. You portrayed this experience throughout the poem through use of antitheses that I really enjoyed. I hope for you to continue ‘making it home’ mentally, because sometimes staying emotionally grounded and remembering everything that comprises your identity is the greatest achievement.

  7. Serena on February 25, 2021 at 1:45 AM

    I really love this poem because of how long and short it is at the same time. The meaning of it really resounds in me and I hope you find yourself safe on your journey back home.

  8. Oshane on November 29, 2022 at 11:23 AM

    Hi HW,

    Thanks for sharing your poem with us. I like that I can relate to your writing. I too have moments where i feel hopeless and defeated by life battles. It is okay to feel this way at times as our strength is not determined by how often we feel defeated but by how often we rise or bounce back from the adversity. I like your positive outlook towards the end of your poem where you acknowledge that these down moments are just a mental battle that we all have to deal with. The key point there is as you stated we is that we should be hopeful knowing that we can succeed.

  9. Grace on February 13, 2023 at 1:35 PM

    Hi there! This poem was really powerful, and I felt that it represented not just physically being incarcerated, but it represented the isolation in your own mind. I know all too well the struggle of forgetting who you are and having to fight to go back to the beginning to relearn it all, not just through my own experiences but also having watched people who are close to me have to do the same. It’s not an easy thing to do and I hope that you take pride in having started in the first place reminding yourself that against all odds, you were still the strong person you used to know. That’s something to be extremely proud of, and I’m really glad that you were able to find it within yourself to choose yourself again so that you could be reminded of your worth. That’s a really inspiring thing. Keep fighting, you’ve got this!

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The poets featured here are currently incarcerated, and many of them are in federal prisons far from home. Your feedback is a valuable source of motivation and connection to the outside community. Post your comments, feedback, and encouragement in the space below the poem. Messages will be passed on directly to the author. Comments may not appear immediately on the site, as our team processes them to mail to the poets.