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A Courage Poem for Souls Braving Through What They’re Going Through

A Courage Poem for Souls Braving Through What They’re Going Through

Courage, to me, means that you show up anyway. Regardless of doubt, insecurity, and fear. No matter how many times you’ve been forced into despair before. This is a courage poem to honor that struggle and the strength still left, even when you’re not sure how you can keep going.

Stepping into the unknown? It takes real courage to start and a whole lot of courage to continue.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a new project you’re excited but equally nervous about or the first time you share a painful personal story or the first time you show up with an open heart after tragedy — that’s a walk that takes courage.

Your boldness could look like sharing your honest opinions, your artwork, your makeup-less face with the world without worrying (too much) about what people think of you.

Personally, this means that I show up here, time and again, to figure out what real healing means. I do it openly. Imperfectly. The best I can. I share with you that I still struggle with depression, the kind that came before my brother’s suicide and the kind that came after.

Personally, I think you’re amazing if you show up for your own healing — willingly, honestly, mindfully, imperfectly, the best you can — whatever heartache you’re healing from.

The person brave enough to share when something hurts is the emblem of courage, not fragility.

Baring your soul, opening your heart, and not even in spite of or despite what happened, but because of what happened: that’s crazy courage in my book. Tragedy and turmoil especially can make us feel like we’ve been beaten down, but then again, it can be an opening for our courage to grow. That’s ultimately up to each of us.

Here’s my courage poem for you, to remind you that you’re far from alone and far stronger than you’ve probably give yourself credit for in the past. In fact, strength has little to do with how strong you feel and far more to do with how you show up anyway.

A Courage Poem

Courage is talking about courage

with tears streaming down your cheeks.


Courage is not knowing

what comes next and

stepping forward, hands unclenched,

right into it.


The bliss of the unknown is not

something you get used to.

Still, wonder opens your eyes

and you see

the first signs of new life

after hope lost

all her petals and leaves —

this is what courage does for you.


There is a boldness to your heart

that matches its softness.

When threads grow apart,

time and again,

you hire love as your seamstress.

Time and again,

you ask love to make you different.

You do not expect to be the same —

nor should you want to.

You did not come into this world

to be untouched by life.

Change is the only way

to learn your eternal name.

This too, you know,

that bliss is the sweet sister

to her beloved:



Nor is fear alien

to a courageous heart —

no more a stranger

than a night sky is

to its star.

. . .

Tell me:

Which part of this poem did you need to read today?

Tell me in the comments. I read every single one, and I'd love to know!

~ Jen 

P.S. Want this poem on your wall or desk, so you never forget your strength? Go visit my shop and pick your favorite version!

Comments on this post (8)

  • Mar 06, 2021

    Very Direct writing that gets straight to the heart of the matter. It propels the reader forward to step up to the task ahead regardless of the outcome. Thank you for your insight. Sincerely brie

    — Bridget

  • Jun 29, 2020

    Love this so much. Thank you.

    — WL R

  • Feb 17, 2020

    Martine, thank you for sharing your favorite part <3

    — Jennifer Williamson

  • Feb 17, 2020

    …not knowing what comes next but still stepping forwards…

    — Martine

  • Oct 17, 2019

    Terri, thank you! Of course, you can share anything of mine ~ please just credit my name and/or ~ so glad you enjoyed it! <3

    — Jennifer Williamson

  • Oct 17, 2019

    I was looking for something for encouragement and found this poem. Thank you for it. I want to copy and share it on my Facebook account.

    — terri alderete

  • Jul 15, 2019

    Hi Lucas, thank you! I’d love for you to include this poem in your project – just be sure to credit me (Jennifer Williamson) and a link to my website. For a short bio already written up, please see my “Press” page, linked at the bottom of the screen. :) ~ Jen

    — Jennifer Williamson

  • Jul 15, 2019

    Hi Jennifer
    I love this poem and I would like to include it into my anthology of courage I request your permission to publish your poem I will acknowledge the poem where it was first published if you agree please let me know and send your biography of 100 words thanks
    kind regards

    — Lucas

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