Jared Singer – “A Letter to Sarah” (NPS 2012)


A letter to Sarah when considering superpowers. If I could regenerate
any damage done to my body, I would double backflip belly flop
off of the tallest building I could find. I would make you watch,
would not tell you it won’t kill me
when my body hits the ground, turns bone to dust. When blood splatters across your face,
there will be a moment where your heart stops,
where the belly drops out of your everything. I will calmly walk up to you and say, “Yeah, ever since you killed yourself,
it’s been like that for all of us.” All of the times I could fly,
I would take you so high so fast you’d be terrified. The wind resistance alone would rip you
out of my arms, but do not worry. I would hold onto you
with all of this fear and longing. I would whisper into your ear, “If only you’d told us
something was wrong, we could have held you,
told you we loved you. We could have helped.” If I could read other people’s minds,
I would not invade your privacy. Instead I would eavesdrop
on every passerby, tattoo my arms with all the nice things
they wanted to say: every “I wish I could be that graceful,” every “How do you look so good?” Meeting your lovers would turn
my chest, into a back into a masterpiece
of everything they should’ve said, every “How could I ever let her get away?” every “She was the best thing
that ever happened to me.” My legs would be a patchwork
with hatch marks for every time I still wished you were with me. It wouldn’t even take a single day
to cover this body in all of the nice things
people didn’t think you needed to hear. If I could travel through time,
I would go back to the moment before it was too late, go back to the moment
before you started a suicide note that read, “Dear Terry, I’m doing this now when I know
you will be the one to find me because of all of my friends
I think you are the one who is strong enough to take this.” What makes you think
I was strong enough to take this? I would go back to the moment
before you became the reason I don’t put pen to paper anymore,
write everything in my head. Go back to the moment before you became
the reason I don’t read letters without having someone else
proofread them first. If I could project my thoughts
into someone else’s head even knowing it could never
have saved you, but believing maybe, maybe it could have saved me, you never would have doubted
even for a second that you were loved. (cheers and applause)

100 thoughts on “Jared Singer – “A Letter to Sarah” (NPS 2012)

  1. I cried so hard after hearing this poem. I feel your pain, bro. I lost my best friend last year to suicide, and I would trade any day of my life to have her back.

    RIP Jill <3

  2. I don't know how to respond so I'll just keep on clapping and crying and watching. INSPIRATIONAL MOMENT!

  3. Jared Singer, you ripped us up with your tormented love language. I can't even imagine what it must've taken to write this. I wouldn't have been able to even say the title of the poem without bursting into tears, were it me. Thank you for sharing your story.

  4. 0:54 when the tears start and then they just keep coming til the end

  5. I honestly thought all of the comments were people just trying to be funny, but i was so wrong. I don't think ive cried like this since my grandma died back when i was 12. Seriously dude this was some strong stuff and a fantastic poem even though its so heart breaking. 

  6. this is one of the most emotionally powerful videos i have ever watched

  7. Wow!  This is beautiful.  This person has an amazing gift, and so much passion.  Cried so hard.  XD

  8. "What makes you think I was strong enough to take this?"
    That's the line that made me sob. It wasn't just tear. I heaved forward in empathy.

  9. This takes me back to five years ago when I lost my best and probably only friend to suicide. He always told me that he knew I was strong enough to live even after he was gone and to this day I still wonder "What makes you think I'm strong enough?"

  10. This is so beautiful. You can literally feel his pain. So relatable.

  11. If you're ever feeling like hurting yourself, this is the thing to watch.

  12. Scrolling through the comments and glad to see im not the only one who's crying alone on my bed…. first time I've cried via YouTube

  13. this is so powerful…. I'm so sorry to consider the inspiration for this piece

  14. https://www.facebook.com/groups/rayelowen/  This one is for you My Son – Love and Miss you Always 04/03/1999-17/07/2013

  15. i want to be friends with Jared so bad. his poetry is amazing. even just having a beer or cup of coffee with him one afternoon would be so cool. he's an amazingly insightful and kind human being. love it. love his poetry. i hope he does big things someday. 

  16. After I heard this. I no longer considered suicide an option. This poem saved my life

  17. Jared Singer.. you're so amazing. I feel like you give me part of yourself everytime I watch one of your poems… I promise to keep it safe! I think that this is a really brave and beautifully written poem!

  18. Hi I'm french i'd like to understand this poem better, it's so powerful, is there a transcript available?

  19. 11 years ago I lost my mom to suicide.  This is an amazing performance and Jared Singer is such a great man.  Thank you for making this video.

  20. I've seen a few of this guys poems now and oh man he delivers with his voice something I've never seen. The way his voice strains on words is really awesome.

  21. 'I don't read letters without having someone else proof read them first' 
    that line is heartbreaking 

  22. My best friend and true love commit suicide over a year ago, and since then, you are the only person that has been able to understand and put my feelings into word. Jared, this left me speechless. I fucking imploded when I found out – I remember the day, the hour, the moment, when my heart dropped so much I thought I was going to die there and then. The fucking conversation only your nightmares can come up with when you learn that the greatest thing in your life is gone.

    No one gets it unless they've been through it, and that's what kills me most. You're a different person after it happens. And you're reminded of it every day.

    Jared, although this is through Button Poetry and the chance that you'll see this message is extremely low, please message me if you just want to talk. I get this more than anybody.

    <3

  23. this makes me cry so much. and now I really wanna hug my best friend and let him know how much he means to me :3

  24. where can I find a transcript? want to show to a deaf friend. its so beautiful.

  25. What made you think I was strong enough to take this…
    Tear stained cheeks & heavy heart
    You were my strength….

  26. What made you think I was strong enough to take this…
    Tear stained cheeks & heavy heart
    You were my strength….

  27. still my favorite spoken word i have ever ever heard, and i've heard a lot of spoken word

  28. Some of the poems are truly awesome, however i find other poems offensive towards men.

  29. When Contemplating Super Powers (A Letter To Sarah)

    if i could regenerate any damage done to my body

    i would double backflip belly flop off of the tallest building i could find
    i would make you watch
    would not tell you it won’t kill me
    when my body hits the ground
    turns bone to dust
    when blood splatters across your face
    there will be a moment where your heart stops
    where the belly drops out of your everything
    i will calmly walk up to you and say
    “yeah, ever since you killed yourself it’s been like that for all of us
    all of the time”

    if i could fly
    i would take you so high
    so fast
    you would be terrified that wind resistance alone would
    rip you out of my arms
    but do not worry
    i will hold onto you with the strength born of fear and longing 
    as your vision starts to go black i will whisper
    “if you’d only told us something was wrong
    we could have held you
    told you we loved you
    we could have helped”

    if i could read other people’s minds
    i would not invade your privacy
    instead
    i would tattoo my arms
    by listening in to every passerby
    recorded all of the things they wanted to tell you but didn’t
    every “how could she be so graceful”
    every “i wish i could move with that confidence”
    meeting your ex-lovers would turn my chest and back into a masterpiece 
    of everything they should have told you
    every “how could i have ever let her get away”
    every “she was the best thing that ever happened to me”
    my legs would turn into patchwork with hatch marks
    for every time i still wished you were with me 
    it wouldn’t even take a single day
    to cover this body
    with all of the nice things 
    people wanted to tell you
    but didn’t think you needed to hear
    if i could travel through time
    i would go back to the moment
    before it was too late
    before you started a suicide note

    “dear jared,
    i’m doing this now
    when i know you will be the one to find me
    because of all of my friends
    i think you’re the one who is strong enough to take this”

    what made you think i was strong enough to take this?

    i would go back to the moment you became the reason i don’t read letters anymore without having someone else proofread them first
    go back to the moment before you became the reason i don’t put pen to paper anymore
    write all my poems in my head
    if i could project my thoughts into other people’s heads
    even knowing it could never have saved you but believing maybe it could have saved me
    you would never have doubted
    even for an instant
    that you were loved

  30. Can anyone help me out with contacting this poet?? I'm interested in possibly using this poem in a short documentary for a student film contest concerning suicide/mental health. Any help is SO appreciated!!

  31. Every now and again i come back to this. i had a good friend hang her self a couple years a go. This man says everything i feel. i come back to this and feel every second over again. I do it for you Jessica <3

  32. Fuck…I spent most of last night contemplating killing myself…on the phone with a friend hearing him list all the reasons other people shouldn't kill themselves…feeling even more broken because I know I won't actually do it, which means it doesn't get better…
    This is, to my recollection, the only spoken word performance to ever bring me to tears. I don't know if this is the last thing that I needed or exactly what I needed. Either way, thank you. And I'm so sorry. </3

  33. "it wouldn't take a single day to cover this body in all the nice things they never thought you needed to hear" … "even if it couldn't save you maybe it could have saved me from never doubting for a moment that you were loved."

  34. Kim Jonghyun… you spoke openly about your struggles. I'm sure you knew you were loved by so many around the world. We are so proud of you, thank you for sharing yourself to the world. Shawols miss you everyday and we hurt so much. We are regretful that we couldn't help you… We couldn't save you.
    Kim Jonghyun you worked hard. You did so extremely well.

  35. my name is sarah and i attempted suicide 8 months ago. every time i hear this poem it reminds me why i am glad i failed. i can't explain how that feels. but if you ever see this comment, Jared, thank you. so much.

  36. this hurts even more when it's preceded by The last love letter from an Entomologist

  37. this was the poem that prevented me from killing myself
    it helped me believe it when people said they loved me, too.

  38. For the past two years, every time I think about attempting suicide again, I watch this, I break down into tears and it clears my head, I don’t have anyone that would feel like this if I just one day disappeared, but I don’t know why this helps me, it helps me to breathe and to feel the pain of losing myself maybe?

    This time though I just remembered how I felt before, it didn’t stir anything up in me, I’m trying to be strong, I don’t know how anymore.

  39. "If I could read other people's minds, I wouldn't invade your privacy."

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