When You Get to the Bottom – A Poem / Benson Ansell, Yahel Social Change Program Participant

 
When You Get to the Bottom
 

When you get to the bottom, you you you

You gotta push, gotta push

When you’re feeling real low, with no place to go

You gotta push, gotta push

When you try to make it out, but you’re filled with self-doubt,

You gotta push, gotta push

Now it’s your time to shine, so don’t rewind

You gotta push, gotta push…

And I’ve been pushing all day long,

You know I had to push to write this song,

We gotta come together as we move along,

We’ve all had our moments of feeling dead wrong,

So what can I do and what can I say,

Feeling downtrodden and wasting away,

This is how I felt just the other day,

Now it’s my time to write and relay,

The lesson I learned with no delay,

Because time keeps ticking, washing away,

See I was feeling good, up off the charts,

With love on my mind and peace in my heart,

I met some new people and I learned a lot,

When I stepped into the life of a refugee,

This is not the person people dream to be,

I can clearly see, that they see in me,

A really lucky man from a good country,

But they also see, dreams of equality,

I began to understand through their stories,

You see they came from place where they couldn’t live,

Now they live in a place where it’s hard to live,

I said to myself, “Something’s gotta give”,

They deserve more than was decided to give,

But they didn’t give up they decided to live,

Remember those who died just trying to live,

I said remember those who died just trying to live,

 

When you get to the bottom, you you you

You gotta push, gotta push

When you’re feeling real low, with no place to go

You gotta push, gotta push

When you try to make it out, but you’re filled with self-doubt,

You gotta push, gotta push

Now it’s your time to shine, so don’t rewind

You gotta push, gotta push…

 

In South Tel Aviv on a Friday night,

The life force that shined was mighty bright,

And I bought some fruits, not heavy but light,

Then I ran into some friends who were doing it right,

Posted up on the block selling merchandise,

Cool shades for the people the selection was nice,

I decided to cruise, to amuse my eye,

Electronics and clothes and books and spice,

And when I say spice it’s the type to entice,

Lurking in the shadows like stealthy mice,

As I walked past I turned my head to the right,

A motion from a hand saying, “Come I don’t bite”,

So I stopped my pace, and for a second I thought,

Then I stepped into darkness with positive thoughts,

“Manishma manishma, now what do you want?”,

I said, “I’m kind of hungry where’s a restaurant?”,

With a frown, “No brown?”, a king without his crown,

He pointed to where some food could be found…

Now my belly’s full as I parted with a pound,

I walked to the station for a way to leave town,

It was a Friday night, thus the buses had stopped,

So I looked for a sheirut that could drop me off,

Somewhere not too far, oooh the City of Streets,

Sababa that’s no proba gotta bounce to the beat,

And I made it to the Streets, just my bag and my feet,

I heard, “You better get to walking that special and cheap”,

 

When you get to the bottom, you you you

You gotta push, gotta push

When you’re feeling real low, with no place to go

You gotta push, gotta push

When you try to make it out, but you’re filled with self-doubt,

You gotta push, gotta push

Now it’s your time to shine, so don’t rewind

You gotta push, gotta push…

 

So I started on my trek full of energy,

A way to clear my mind and see clearly,

My past, my future, me on my journey,

And the love that I found, I know it sounds corny,

My family, past lovers and dreams,

Are the precious pillars of life that support me,

And as a feel the beat, of my heart and my feet,

Deep down inside, it’s taking over me,

A rising tide of this special energy,

I’m bursting at the seems it’s causing me to sing,

“Thank you for this life and the blessings it brings,

Keep me safe on this journey, I am not alone”,

10 kilometers under the belt, play the hand I was dealt,

And no matter the numbers you know I played it well,

Under the moon and stars, they were casting a spell,

Descending deep in my mind like a bucket in a well,

But ascending with a climb, doing fine can’t you tell,

Now I’m home right on time like the ringing of a bell,

“You walked from there to here? Ben you’re crazy now you hear!”,

“It was a really nice walk, you should try it no fear”,

Amazed at the feat of simply walking down the street,

They forgot about the journey of a refugee,

They forgot about the journey of a refugee,

 

When you get to the bottom, you you you

You gotta push, gotta push

When you’re feeling real low, with no place to go

You gotta push, gotta push

When you try to make it out, but you’re filled with self-doubt,

You gotta push, gotta push

Now it’s your time to shine, so don’t rewind

You gotta push, gotta push…

 

 

This poem is dedicated to the Eritrean and Sudanese refugees of South Tel Aviv and to all refugees across the world.

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