Dancing with the devil is a battle of blood and wounds. It is dangerous, and some lose their lives. He comes in many faces each one specifically custom for his victim. For me, he is a handsome fellow who will try to charm me with his Cheshire cat smile. His hand extending to mine as he ask me for a dance. He promises his intentions are innocent, but he knows nothing of innocence. I don't let him fool me. Behind that pretty face is a killer with red horns and black, endless eyes. We all have unavoidable demons whose job is to rip apart our very souls. Each of them having different faces. For some it is anxiety, depression, loneness, stress, or many other things. Mine happens to be a mind with never ending thoughts. However, no matter what face they wear, you can walk away from their dance with your life if you know how to take the lead.


Dancing with the Devil by JonPaul Kessinger

I have danced with the devil
He tried to pull me to his level

He pulled with all his might
But instead of dying I began to write
I was able to make it until morning light
I knew I couldn't give in
I couldn't let my demons win

Tomorrow he might ask for another dance
It will be a game of chance

I wish when the song comes on I could say no
But it's hard when you're standing toe to toe

Because the devil has dangerously romantic charm
He doesn't have sinister horns, but a smile that doesn't raise alarm

To read the full poem you can visit his Instagram @Practical_Poet.


The Person Behind the Words

JonPaul Kessinger is a young man from West Virginia who began writing when he was a freshman in high school. He found that when he wrote poems he was able to articulate his feelings in ways he couldn't in conversation. He recently started sharing those poems with the public in hopes of helping other deal with the inner demons.

He mentions in the post above that "if you don't learn how to fight, you'll become comfortable in [the devil's] arms, and it will turn from a slow dance to a fight for your life." For him, his duel was with depression. He learned to fight with his demons by writing. Although a pen and paper don't seem like weapons, they have become his sword and shield during the battles he faces in his daily life. His pen has been able to deliver more significant blows than the mighty blade Excalibur, and his paper has been a far stronger shield than that of Zeus'.


Learning to Take the Lead

It is hard to reject the dance when you are standing only inches away from the devil himself. You can smell his aroma, look deep into his eyes, hear his words, and feel his hot breathe against your neck. Instead of learning to reject the dance, you must learn to take the lead. For JonPaul and I, we have learned to by writing. We face our demons head on and acknowledge they are there. However, we do not allow them to control us. We challenge you to find a way that you can take the lead in this dance for your life.