Death smears our race with pain, clogs our media, and follows us home. It seems to be around every corner. We face it unprepared.
In the story of Jesus and his friend Lazarus, we read about the pain Jesus felt from his loss of a close friend. What struck me this time as I remember this story is that the short verse, “Jesus wept,” is in isolation. He is alone with his grief in this moment, much as his name and this verb are alone. Nothing distracts or diminishes the hurt described here. Yet, this small sentence is part of a larger context, a story of resurrection. We must keep reading to see it.
This small sentence, though, is mourning. It is God’s pain and humanity’s pain, unfiltered. Jesus wept. We weep. That is what I capture in this poem.
To the grieving, God bless, and keep reading.
it is gut-wrenching, time-stopping phone calls.
it is not enough time, a last goodbye, or no goodbye at all.
it is numbness and it is yelling at the sky every question clawing up our throats.
it is photographs in shaking fingers and tears hidden in pillows.
it is a circle of hands and a lone, wavering voice saying prayers.
it is a long, heavy box carried on our shoulders.
at the end of the day it is the sound of a melancholy song loud on the stereo
while we sing along to the tune playing from our heart.
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Grief by Briana Batty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.