I’ve never written much poetry. This one welled up one day, twenty years ago, in the midst of deep grief. For all of you who are faced with the loss of someone dear, it is my humble offering.
I was strolling along the Charles River near Boston, MA on a chilly November morning in 1996. Contemplating the link between the depths of grief and heights of joy, and observing a few straggling Autumn leaves, this came up. It surprised me, as most of my ‘poetry’ is very sing-songy and sometimes Dr. Suess-like, so I’ve been told. The writing of it somehow helped me get to a lighter place within my heart.
I’m sharing it not to try to fix anyone, or tell them how it’s all going to be better. Everyone’s process is their own. I am sharing just to say that I do hear you, and I know how you feel. Peace, xx-Eve
grief and gratitude
outdoors the countryside mirrors the landscape of my heart:
the trees, the rocks and grass are still obvious
not yet erased by winter’s white starkness
yet something is missing from view –
there’s a hollowness – or more like a half-emptiness
leaves have deserted trees that once nourished them
scattering in the wind like the tears i shed for you
some leaves cling stubbornly, refusing to abandon their precious branches
they are like the tears that well up but won’t fall
filling my heart ‘til it feels like it will sink into the ground
– pulled down toward the earth by undeniable gravity
yet they still cling as if in fear of the release
and relief that flowing tears may bring
if all the leaves descend, yielding to the chilling autumn air
will there be anything left to remind me of the fullness of summer?
if all my tears spill over, surrendering to the heaviness of grief
will i then forget the sweetness of the years we shared?
i cannot let that final leaf fall, the last tear flow
i will steadfastly hold some small piece of this pain
so ever to embrace the joy that was once your beautiful life
and always feel gratitude for the time we had
– Eve Littlepage 11/11/1996