Sad news

Death is rarely a welcome visitor
no guest takes as much
giving so little in return
even in anticipation of it's visit
we are wholly unprepared
as if that in itself
might be enough to cause delay
hold shut the gate
through which we pass
into eternity
but death sweeps all aside
ignoring this lack of preparedness
entering without knocking
it overshadows
so that our loved ones cease
and are carried off

I knew
it was something bad
the minute I heard your voice
I knew
and a part of me plummeted
as I let your words wash over me
as I listened to your heart
crack open
words pouring out
through the fissures
even as I clung to the phone
even as I slid to the floor
I tried to find words
where no words will do
since words cannot undo
and then a nudge
at the back of my mind
literally hearing her voice
reminding me to listen
that I don't need words to listen

And so in those moments
I quietened my own heart
reminded that this is not my grief
although I ache with you
to help
to offer solace
to lift some share
but I can't
it belongs to you
it is yours
ours is but an echo
the smallest ripple
it does not compare
so I can only offer
what I have
knowing it is not enough
because it can't be

Time ticks on
eventually your words
what did I say
nothing much
but enough I hope
laying the phone into it’s cradle
I send up a prayer
for my friend
and also to a friend
who watches over me
and even now
finds a way
to remind me
of the value
in a silent presence.


  1. I'm sorry Jos, these things too close and never far enough away.

    "reminded that this is not my grief
    although I ache with you"
    these words gentle me this week in a very selfish way. They are words that need to be said and received over in my neck of the woods. It is difficult when they are not.


  2. you are a remarkable person, jos. i never cease to be impressed by your wisdom.

  3. This is so beautiful and heartbreaking and real.

  4. jos, i am so sorry. anyone who would call out to you to share grief will find compassion and love, that's for sure.

    this is a beautiful poem. you do this great loss justice, with such reverence.

    i don't know how you will feel to know that emily rabbit has begun to promote the seed packets and you as her business manager. i thought you should know.

    with love, jos. again, i am very sorry for your loss.


  5. jos -

    these words - so hard, yet so true to life....

    "reminded that this is not my grief
    although I ache with you"

    these words come from a norwegian song - i can cry with you, but i cannot cry for you...

    so true. so true.


  6. I'll ache with you, and extend prayer and healing thoughts.

  7. What words could I offer you for succor? Are there really any? If so, I don't know it. The heart if full and beating one second and a tiny wire totally separated from the body can break it with such ease...

    Losing a friend, I don't care what the world may say or think, it is akin to lose a part of us that we cannot retrieve, except in memories from the Universe. May your memories be beautiful and plentiful in the days to come.

  8. Don't we all sometimes feel that we cannot possibly endure more sadness, even when it is not primarily ours ... it adds to ours. Even so, I am glad for the chance to be a friend. To give what I can.

    I am so grateful for the comments and support. Thank you. xoxox

  9. Dear Jos, I'm so sorry. You have had a great deal of sadness these past few weeks. Standing strong for a friend, offering solace and comfort, all the while feeling helpless, takes so much strength from your heart. I have no doubt that, with your beautiful words and keen sensitivity to emotional nuance, you provided your friend with just the right level of compassion and tenderness and support that was required.