Berti May — Climbing Today

Climbing Today

And sometimes on my darkest days, 
I get empowered by the light. 
All of a sudden I feel my strength, 
And realize my might. 
I can conquer this day, 
Like I am climbing a rock wall. 
I can pull myself up past each negative thought, 
I will NOT let myself fall. 
The energy surges through me, 
It settles in my soul. 
Today is the kind of day, 
When I truly feel whole. 
But then I reach the top, and I remember - 
I am quite afraid of heights.


I suffer from anxiety and depression, and poetry is a creative outlet I use to process my negative thoughts. Whenever I feel anxious, I reflect back on the photographs I have taken of objects or places. Then I choose one photograph to focus on, and write about the anxiety I am experiencing in that moment. 

This piece focuses on a photograph of rock climbers I took while hiking in Eldorado Canyon State Park. I was in awe of how brave, yet steady they must be. You can barely see them in the photograph because they are so high up. The day I wrote this, I pulled myself out of bed and was genuinely productive and inspired by what I had accomplished and started. The positive energy was intoxicating and I felt renewed. But there was an anxious sense of caution in the back of my mind - because I knew this day would end.

Berti May is my pen name - a tribute to my late grandmothers.