We Are Fragile Things

Yes, our people have done the greatest things.
They’ve explored the deepest trenches,
Climbed the highest mountains,
Even travelled to the moon and back.

But we can be fragile things,
Broken by folly and fault,
Taken by tide and turbulence,
Wrought by death and accident.

And we can be mended,
Healed by truth and trust,
Bandaged by season and time,
Recovered by friends and family.

We are fragile things
Broken by loss and fixed with love.

Kintsugi (also known as kintsukuroi) is the Japanese art of fixing broken pottery with lacquer dusted with gold or silver. You may have seen these bowls or vases and they have these beautiful veins of colour across them, where the pottery has been put back together.

This art inspired this piece. I love the idea that something strong, like a bowl or vase, can be broken quite easily, and while one might toss it aside, the other fixes it, and does so with such care and talent. The finished result, arguably, has more beauty than it did before because of someone’s talent and time and love.

I had a thought. While people have done tremendous things, bigger than we could imagine, for our planet and its people, they too could have these golden seams. They may have been broken or hurt before, but their recovery, reached by the help of others, only made them stronger and more magnificent!

309 thoughts on “We Are Fragile Things

  1. Your poem inspired by Kintsugi is beautiful. But some pieces are very difficult to be understood let alone fixed by other people… they just stare at the brokenness and eventually look away because there is no simple solution. Is the gold and silver that binds the broken bits always from the love of other people? Where else can it come from?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It doesn’t have to be love, of course. People “mend” themselves with discipline, motivation, inner strength, all sorts – ultimately, loving and forgiving yourself is paramount, arguably the start to problem solving. I think Kintsugi, in this case, can be interpreted to mean anything =)

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Just a question for you, out of interest… I love writing poetry, but I’m always wary of sharing it online. I see so many random poems flying around on the Internet and I always wonder whether the original writer was able to take the credit. Have you ever had any experiences with this, or do you have any thoughts?


      2. Tough to answer. If you’re really worried, pop a basic copyright on your posts. To be honest, people will share anything, but it’s rare someone will steal for profit. Don’t let it stop you, though. Get posting and share with the world!

        Liked by 1 person

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