Tag Archives: grief poem

Poetry: “The Colour of Pomegranates,” Sujit Prasad

Digital art snowfall Japanese winter
rt

It cuts through suddenly, expertly, this want to talk to you — like the way you used to open pomegranates. Nothing was wasted, not time, not an extra ruby-seed on the inside. You always said that one does not cut a fruit — you ask them to open, gently, and they would let you in. They knew you would be fair while splitting them. I try to talk to you, cutting through time. It does not open. It says, learn from your mother.

-Sujit Prasad

Falling Lessons: Erasure One – Motionpoem

“My father steps into a field of lost
sensation, sunflowers, a yellow star”

I had the pleasure of interviewing Beth Copeland about her gorgeous poem “Falling Lessons: Erasure One.” The poem is about the loss of her father to Alzheimer’s, and was transformed into the above video for Motionpoems by Ahn Vu (it was also featured on PBS Newshour!)

Read my interview here 

Poem: No System for Grief

You were in the world and. More
slowly now I am

so fasted now so. Long
it’s been without
you, if you ever read this
you were what. I was dreaming of

this welt, to know
it before. It comes like love
I loved your

empty spaces,

read more at Linebreak

Kimberly Grey

All Hallow’s Eve, Sheldon Vanauken

Tonight, while weighing wild winged hope with fears

Of loss, again the girl’s voice crying gay

And sweet – O playmate of lost pagan years! –

Comes ringing in the glory of the May.

O singing beauty! Singing though there nears

The moment of all finding and all loss:

Together in our laughter and our tears,

Wind-driven to the centre where ways cross.

Rose garden in blue night, where souls embraced

In holy silence, timeless ecstasy:

Truth grew between us, final beauty laced

The stars, and awed we knew eternity.

A secret sharing passed from eye to eye:

In death the singing beauty does not die.

-Sheldon Vanauken

Poetry: ‘The Call’ by C Dale Young

Make sure you click through for the ending because especially in this poem..it’s the most important part.

in memoriam Cecil Young

I am addicted to words, constantly ferret them away
in anticipation. You cannot accuse me of not being prepared.
I am ready for anything. I can create an image faster than

just about anyone. And so, the crows blurring the tree line;
the sky’s light dimming and shifting; the Pacific cold and
impatient as ever: this is just the way I feel. Nothing more.

I could gussy up those crows, transform them
into something more formal, more Latinate, could use
the exact genus Corvus, but I won’t. Not today.

Like any addict, I, too, have limits. And I have written
too many elegies already. The Living have become
jealous of the amount I have written for the Dead.

So, leave the crows perched along the tree line
watching over us. Leave them be. The setting sun?
Leave it be. For God’s sake, what could be easier

in a poem about death than a setting sun? Leave it be.

read more

Poetry: Sleeping with Grief

I don’t know what to do with my wife’s grief,
How she clutches my shirt,
Weeps the way Eve wept for Abel,
Sorrow wild, thick as locusts.

She says grief sits in her stomach,
Fills her up like Thanksgiving dinner.
I imagine carving grief, serving it
With stuffing, black and full of onion.

I’m trying to understand
How despair works, how being alone
Is like burying her mother again.

I’m not alone, she says.
When you leave, grief crawls
Into bed with me. I can’t say no.
I can’t close my eyes, turn my back.

At night, in the dark, I lie
Next to my wife, put my arm across
Her sleeping body, feel her chest
Rise and fall, slow as a funeral.

If I press my ear to her breast,
I will hear the sound Eve made
When God introduced her to death.

-Martin Achatz, Mayapple Press 

The Book of Lamps, being a psalm-book

Came across this exquisite poem on Cellpoems and had to post it. From poet Jeffrey Pethybridge – “The Book of Lamps, being a psalm-book” is part of a book-length sequence entitled “Striven, The Bright Treatise,” which was written in the wake of my brother’s suicide at the Golden Gate Bridge in the winter of 2007. This excerpt from “The Book of Lamps” represents a fourth of the full poem; in its entirety, the poem is composed of 128 stanzas with each quarter attaining––as in the interrelated movements of symphonic structure––its own shape and theme.

I.

Drug-tired, at a loss, above the lucid waves.

II.

Palms rested on the railing (like anyone
looking out at the Pacific sun-set).

III.

Palms pressed against the railing, the      last
solid thing held, the limit touched—
drug-tired from the chronic drag of days.

IV.

Palms open to the light-
ness in letting go: liberty, relief—
but also plummeting and irrevocable;
the waves, unsparing.

V.

Palms pressed flat up
against the wailing wall
in your gut, ulcerous,
pocked by guilt, shame—
secret pains in being.

VI.

Palms open and upturned,
good little supplicants,
what is their (secret) prayer?—
what is open to praise?

VII.

Candor?—the grace of accuracy
to say what happened? Facts
merely disclosed by the Angel
of the Police Report?

VIII.

The right note to elicit
briny-air?—or that thick beach-chill
along the skin at dusk? The nouns
to summon it.

IX.

The fall is four seconds long, the body
reaches a speed upwards of—as physics
describes the case.

X.

(The truth is I know the truth is
made through work: lucid, unsparing).

Read the rest at Cellpoems

 

Thank you Cellpoems

Really excited to say that my poem has been published as the poem of the week at Cellpoems! Cellpoems is one of my three favorite online publications, along with Rattle and Linebreak, so it’s a real pleasure to be included. If you haven’t yet, check them out, and consider subscribing -as well as publishing online, they deliver a short, exquisite poem once a week via text to subscribers.

Orange

I thought you would make things certain
Like a window nailed shut to the sill.

Read more 

How It Will Happen, When

There you are, exhausted from a night of crying, curled up on the couch, the floor, at the foot of the bed, anywhere you fall you fall down crying, half amazed at what the body is capable of, not believing you can cry anymore. And there they are, his socks, his shirt, your underwear and your winter gloves, all in a loose pile next to the bathroom door, and you fall down again. Someday, years from now, things will be different, the house clean for once, everything in its place, windows shining, sun coming in easily now, sliding across the high shine of wax on the wood floor. You’ll be peeling an orange or watching a bird spring from the edge of the rooftop next door, noticing how, for an instant, its body is stopped on the air, only a moment before gathering the will to fly into the ruff at its wings and then doing it: flying. You’ll be reading, and for a moment there will be a word you don’t understand, a simple word like now or what or is and you’ll ponder over it like a child discovering language. “Is,” you’ll say over and over until it begins to make sense, and that’s when you’ll say it, for the first time, out loud: He’s dead. He’s not coming back. And it will be the first time you believe it.

-Dorianne Laux

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