poetry

When You Are Friends with Grief. {poetry}

 

Loss hits different people differently. In my family, we have lost several people in unexpected and tragic ways. This poem though is about loss and the soul.

What happens in our soul when we experience loss is significant, and our society may not respond how we wish, how we need. This poem is for those of us who have been there. Who have no words to talk about their loss, just a feeling. We eventually become friends with grief. It becomes a companion. A known quality to our life.

This poem is also meant to inspire. We breathe through our tears. It’s not one day at a time, sometimes it is one breath at a time. If you are suffering the darkness of loss, know that there is light too, and that you will love again.

***

When you are friends with grief
You sit still when someone suffers a loss
The memory of your own loss washes over you, and you relive its tidal wave

When you are friends with grief
People who know you remember who you are
They see you, but you are not present
They talk through you, over you, but not to you

But to be friends with grief
Is also very good

You know how dark darkness really is
You know that the light does return
You know that you can cry and scream
And that is your truth

When you are friends with grief
You can ask it questions
How long will I suffer? What is this about? Will I love again? Will I heal?

Grief answers
Like an echo from the mountain top
First though it takes you to the bottom
of the raging river
Without a lifeboat
Where it’s only you and the rushing water
You see light, but you are not sure
If you are going to make it or fall further down the rocky canyon
Yet you feel it’s okay, you are willing to die too
But first you just want an answer

Grief answers
And says, You have made it this far
One more minute —
That’s all you need
One more minute
If you can make it through

You breathe through your tears
Your sadness stabs you and
You stab it back

You decide to fight
You will accept the loss
But you also accept the challenge

You sit down with grief
You explain you need to understand
You want to be friends

Grief accepts

It explains,
You never will be the same
You will be with others
But it will never be the same
You will love
Yet it will never be the same

But you will feel light
And it will warm you
And the You you know
Will also have died
But you will still live

Grief will sit with you
Whether you need its company or not
You are never alone
Because you have known grief
And it has known you.

***

Jodi WiumJodi Wium is a depth psychologist studying the work of Jung at Pacifica Graduate Institute. Through life and loss, she has learned where her heart belongs, and hopes — through her writing and her research — you do as well. Namaste.

***

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