The Poem I Never Wanted to Write

Poetry can bring solace when someone we love has died, whether calling upon religious faith, reminding us of the strength and resilience of the human spirit, or simply providing a soothing pattern of rhythm and sound. Poetry can also serve as a loving tribute to keep the memory of the one we lost alive.

In the present instance, however, poetry has failed me. Miserably.

My little brother George died unexpectedly of graft versus host on November 30, 2017.  After the initial raw anguish, I wanted to write a tribute to him, a poem that would capture his essence for our family to hold and cherish for ourselves and then share with others.

I knew it would be hard, very hard, but I thought I could do it. I’m a writer, after all. Words are my stock in trade.

I couldn’t do it. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t do it. The right words just wouldn’t come.

“Grief Song”

I had to write “Grief Song” instead. The first two lines of the poem were prompted by the younger of George’s two grandsons. Cleaning up Glitter has published “Grief Song” in their inaugural issue: “Grief Song.”

Our Dad’s Favorite Picture

69 thoughts on “The Poem I Never Wanted to Write

  1. I thought that I had commented on your post, Liz! A profound tribute to a life well-lived and the memories that were made to sustain you on your personal journey forward. Poetry has a way of defining moments that are difficult to verbalize. I loved the photo of the dynamic duo!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I barely read poetry, and I definitely can’t write it. This touched me deeply, though, and showed me that you can write it beautifully. Sympathy for your continued loss and kudos for your well-deserved publication.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sometimes the Muse falls silent in homage, collecting the power of the moment, cataloging the pain and joy for the time when we will be ready to share them… a sad tribute when we need the immediate consolation…but an indication of the potency of love.

    Liked by 1 person

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