Self-Control

By JH

I’ve heard it said, don’t go to bed
While hanging on to sorrow
You may not have the chance to laugh with those you love tomorrow
You may not mean the words you speak when anger takes its toll

You may regret your actions once you’ve lost your self-control
When you’ve lost your temper
And said some hurtful things
Think about how the heart aches from hurtful things
Think about the heartache your actions sometimes bring

You will never get those moments back
Such precious time to waste
And all because of things you said in anger and in haste
So if you’re loving someone and your pride has settled in
You may not even have the chance to say to them again…
I love you and I miss you and although we don’t agree
I’ll try to see your point of view
Please do the same for me

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31 Comments

  1. Holly on January 26, 2022 at 8:08 PM

    I personally find this poem really relatable, and it gives me an importantly fresh perspective. in my relationships, my pride gets in the way a LOT and I often find myself picking ridiculous fights. But I love my friends and family so much, and I never want to hurt them. I think you put that experience into words really really well, and it touched me a lot because i saw my own experiences reflected in your words. thank you for writing this and please keep writing!

  2. Andrew F on January 27, 2022 at 8:41 PM

    I love the way you end this poem. The last two lines are so much shorter than the four before it. It really gives a punch and makes clear the culmination is what you think you should have/should in the future say. It’s simplicity really cuts through all the confusion you feel when you are in the middle of a fight with a loved one. Well done!

  3. heatherbrubaker on January 27, 2022 at 8:43 PM

    Dear JH,

    Thank you for sharing this poem with me. I love how you started with these common sayings like, “Don’t go to bed / while hanging onto sorrow.” And I almost expected the rest of the poem to tell me why that isn’t true. Instead, you meditate on the truth of that saying, the sometimes what is ruptured may not be healed, or not for a good long time. I also really appreciate the care you take with beat and rhythm. While the poem carries hurt and pain, the rhythm carried me with you gently. I hope that many readers are able to see themselves in your heartfelt message.

    Gratefully,
    Heather

  4. Alice on January 29, 2022 at 2:15 PM

    Not only is this poem absolutely beautiful in content, the rhythm is exceptionally well done, and the rhyme scheme adds an extra punch to the end of each line. I haven’t been this moved by a poem in a long time, you were able to perfectly describe the feeling of loss that comes with being separated from your friends and family, so much so that you inspired me to call my dad and tell him how much me means to me. Thank you. Please keep writing, your work is amazing.

  5. Justin Lambert on February 3, 2022 at 11:51 AM

    I loved this! It really puts thing into perspective regarding what’s truly important in life. I have let my emotions get the best of me in the past and I lashed out on those who did not deserve it so this hits really close to home.

  6. Maddie on February 4, 2022 at 3:28 PM

    That was really nice! This poem is very relatable. The way you wrote about relationships is simple, yet beautiful. Thank you for writing this and reminding us that life is too short to be mad at the ones you love

  7. Adam Ghozeil on February 6, 2022 at 11:17 PM

    It’s great advice, and hard to follow. I feel that your words show that so well, and challenge both of us — writer and reader — to do our best.

  8. Anna Kathryn Speck on February 8, 2022 at 11:55 AM

    I liked how you were able to express your feelings into this one poem. I can see that anger can get the best of some people and writing this poem has clearly helped you. I agree with being able to see other peoples point of views before you act out upon someone else. I enjoyed reading this poem.

  9. Megan McTaggart on February 17, 2022 at 1:24 PM

    I love the rhyme here. It is so hard to rhyme without sounding cheesy, but you managed to convey a heavy message.

  10. Mari on February 17, 2022 at 1:27 PM

    You did a great job of rhyming in a way that flows well. I also really like some of the descriptor words you chose, like “sorrow” and “heartache”. It really shows a depth of emotion.

  11. Josiah Klein on February 18, 2022 at 7:29 PM

    “Such precious time to waste” was my favorite line. The ending was beautiful.

  12. Jaelin Esmay Fraser on February 25, 2022 at 8:23 AM

    I can identify with this poem- i get angry too and say things I shouldn’t. Your words show the pain caused by anger and I think that’s important for people to understand so that they make better decisions on how to handle their anger. Thank you for sharing – I enjoyed reading.

  13. Will on February 27, 2022 at 6:33 PM

    Your voice feels wise and hurt and too familiar with regretting things said in heated moments. I only recently learned the importance and weight of knowing when not to give into anger and say something to hurt someone I loved. I shouldn’t have said what I did and it broke a relationship that could have gone on for the rest of my life. So though I’ve learned it once, thank you for telling me again to remember the love held for another while handling anger.

  14. James on February 27, 2022 at 6:49 PM

    Hey JH, this is such a beautifully written poem, and I think it expresses the ideas of regret and love really well. I can feel the emotion behind it. Please don’t stop writing

  15. MJ on February 27, 2022 at 7:18 PM

    JH,

    As a kid, my mom lived by this rule. After an argument or a tough conversation, she’d always be sure to remind us that she loved us. Reading this poem transported me back to those times as a child. I was fighting back tears. Thank you for sharing this

  16. JAB on March 10, 2022 at 3:22 PM

    I love the message of your poem-don’t take our loved ones for granted even if we disagree. It can be easy to let your pride/ego get the best of you even before the people that we love. This is something that I need to work on, because it could potentially be the last thing I say to this loved one. Thank you for this reminder. I hope to read more of your work.

  17. Lauren Vinson on March 21, 2022 at 11:47 AM

    Everyone has some kind of struggle or insecurity going on. Nobody is perfect no matter how they may look or present themselves. Everyone is fighting their own battle you don’t know about. So, next time you start to lose your temper just remember there may be a reason that person is acting that way. They may gotten bad news that morning causing them to be stressed out or upset. This is something I really struggle with, so it is something I have to work on daily. I feel as if I’m alone and nobody else is going through something as stressful as I am. I just have to really make myself remember everyone goes through struggles. There is always someone that is having the worst day of their life. Just remember to stay positive and that this moment will not last forever. Thank you for inspiring me to strengthen my relationships and work on staying positive for the people around me. Be the light that someone else needs that day!

  18. Holly Jo on March 25, 2022 at 11:49 AM

    Words are powerful, and acknowledgement of that is sometimes hard but also eye opening. Thank you for sharing these mindful words.

  19. KC on April 7, 2022 at 4:03 PM

    JH,

    You perfectly capture the need to love others despite their flaws. At the end of the day, small disagreements are futile when compared to the gift of being in relationship with one another. Keep inspiring others with your words!

  20. Belle on April 19, 2022 at 10:21 PM

    Dear JH,
    Thank you for sharing your poem. I enjoyed reading it and learning from it. The words of your poem were so true to me. It is so hard to keep control of yourself when you are angry or sad, and as you said, a loss of control easily turns into regret. I like what you said about pride and think our pride tricks us a lot. Your poem is eye-opening and encourages me to think before I speak and act. It also encourages me to think of my loved ones and how I don’t want to leave them with hurtful words and heartaches. I hope that you continue writing because you have a gift of storytelling through poetry. Thank you again for sharing.

  21. Emma on April 20, 2022 at 6:22 PM

    Wow, this poem is something that I needed to hear. This is such a good reminder of how our words have an impact on those we speak to. It is also a reminder to fix any bad blood before it is too late. We often do not think about the fact that we are not promised tomorrow with our loved ones, and that they can be gone in the blink of an eye. Rather than giving yourself the chance of living with regret, it is a much better idea to be quick to love and forgive, rather than holding on to hatred and discontent with someone. Great job!

  22. Emily L. on April 20, 2022 at 7:33 PM

    I enjoyed the message of this poem. Your word choice and rhythm really made the poem flow. I think the first few lines are very clear, cut, and emotional. I just really love “I’ve heard it said, don’t go to bed, while hanging on to sorrow, you may not have the chance to laugh with those you love tomorrow.” The entire poem sheds light on the importance of communication and relationships with others. I like how you ended it with asking for the same graces that you should give others. Nice job!

  23. Taylor H. on April 21, 2022 at 3:33 PM

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful message with your poem. It made me feel inspired and motivated to settle any differences that I have with the people that I love. The line, “such precious time to waste” is a reality check for me. Your poem makes me recognize the importance of not “hanging on to sorrow” and starting each day with a fresh slate.

  24. Ryanne Smith on April 24, 2022 at 11:46 AM

    I think this poem is very relevant in today’s society. I think that you laid out self-control very well through this poem. I know that everyone can get carried away with words when it comes to anger, but it is very important to sit back and breath before saying hurtful words that cannot be taken back. I relate very well to this poem. Great Job

  25. Camryn on April 24, 2022 at 3:37 PM

    JH, this is a great piece on how sometimes we let our emotions impact our relationships. Your first line really struck a chord with me. After growing up with parents who fought constantly, I was surprised the first time my partner said to me that we should never leave a disagreement unresolved and to never go to bed angry. It’s changed the way I view all of my relationships, especially the one i have with him. I really enjoy your work, continue writing!!

  26. Kaitlyn R. on April 24, 2022 at 5:07 PM

    JH, I really enjoyed your poem because I can honestly relate to it. I grew up not having the best relationship with my mother. One night I came home and just wanted to go to sleep, and she came in my room offering me dinner. I told her no and she said “goodnight I love you” and I did not say anything. That is the last time I ever had the chance to talk to my mom, and that was 7 years ago this coming May. It has forever stayed with me in the sense that I refuse to go to bed angry when talking with my long-distance partner, a friend, or my dad. Because you never know when or if you will see them again. Next time I am in a situation where I’m mad or upset, I will definitely have your poem in the back of my mind telling me “I love you and I miss you and although we don’t agree, I’ll try to see from your point of view”. It truly is beautiful, thank you for sharing.

  27. Philip on April 25, 2022 at 9:21 PM

    I love this poem. It really speaks to those moments when you feel that your emotions are so strong and overwhelming. It also speaks to the damage these emotions can cause when left unchecked and allowed to run wild. I especially love the stanza, “I love you and I miss you and although we don’t agree/I’ll try to see your point of view/Please do the same for me.” This is a very simple, humble, honest, and human request.

  28. Chynel on April 29, 2022 at 12:40 PM

    This is such a great thing to keep in mind going through life. It’s important for people to understand this, and I need a reminder like this now and then. Thank you for being that reminder and thank you for your poetry!

  29. Eli on May 9, 2022 at 9:56 AM

    I’ve had the same thing happen to me. This feeling is just so discouraging you don’t know what to do anymore. We all need to live every moment of our life. Life is like a stream of water, filled with moments. But we never have the same moment again just like we can never touch the same water from the stream again. Self-control is all about us. What we choose to do with our actions, some actions have consequences. But we must keep going, we must keep taking actions regardless. Even if we feel like we have nothing left we must keep going.

  30. PA on May 10, 2022 at 8:30 PM

    This is beautiful. Time is precious and we never know when the last time we have with someone is. You never know what your last words will be to someone, so why not make it something positive. At least, that’s why I’m feeling after reading your poem. Don’t take anyone for granted. Don’t take your words for granted either. Love your poem, JH.

  31. Katelyn Flanigan on May 18, 2022 at 12:36 AM

    This poem is extremely truthful and the beginning is similar to how I view life. I always try to live each day like there is no tomorrow. Do the things that make you happy, be with people that make you happy, and never go to bed without solving any problems you feel need solved.
    Sometimes you say things you shouldn’t have said and the other person may never be able to forgive the things you may have said or done. It is important to learn from your mistakes and to catch yourself if you feel like you are going to do something you may regret. You can’t undo the past you can only control the present and work towards a great future. Being able to see the other person point of view is a great way to understand how they feel and can help you to not make the same mistakes in the future.

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