No Match for Grief


First, you dive in, vowing

To ease your sister’s pain,

As if you have power.

You’re no more match for grief

Than you were for cancer or death (HIS).


Then, you wince at

The sharpness of her pain.

As if it hurts you, too.

You’ve never been where she is,

Or was — loved wife, then grieving widow.


Next, you land on knees

Begging her release from pain,

Knowing it’s beyond you.

You surrender on her behalf

As she braves day by day, breath by breath.


Soon, you know your task:

To stand witness to pain,

Facing its shattering reality.

You’re merely, miraculously there:

A place where she can lean and speak.


You learn to honor feelings and

Stand steady in spite of turmoil.

You recognize you’re no fixer.

No one is, but the God she resists.

So, you invite him and his angels to sprinkle fairy dust in her dreams.


Now, you listen with your soul.

Know presence without pretense.

You observe pain with a dash of hope.

Yesterday teeter-totters with tomorrow,

All up in the air, except the certainty of your sister’s smile.


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