Wednesday, April 24, 2019


Robert Frost wrote: "A poem begins with a lump in the throat.” 

How can I write about all of the things that make it hard to swallow, that make the centre of my chest ache, that fill me with both protest and longing?

I hear about how more and more adults under forty are deciding not to have children because of the anticipated severity of climate change in their lifetime.

A radio report on the bombings in Sri Lanka tells me one woman lost three children. Three children. I pray she has more children who are still alive- not because I think it will take away the agony of loss, but because they might keep her breathing.

A friend tells me she has cancer. The fact of this sinks in. She is refusing chemo, as is her right. This fact sinks in. The thing that people don’t tell you about getting older is that this time of life is filled with losses. Do we ever get “good” at this- whatever “good at” might mean?

I sit still and let it all wash over me. And I notice the tree nearby has buds not yet unfurled but swelling with possibility.

I watch the small children running and squealing in the park next door, One falls and another stops the game to help him up, giving him a quick but enthusiastic hug with short arms, brushing debris off his jacket (although I’m pretty sure the dirt was more rubbed in than brushed off.) It makes me smile.

I listen to the sounds of construction on the building where I live. I watch the men- including those who hold a jackhammer for the better part of a day- wondering what that does to their bodies, knowing they are working to provide for themselves and those they love.

Everywhere, even in the aching places of loss and trepidation, I hear the world around me whisper, "Live!" ~Oriah

Thank you to Karen Davis at Open Door Dreaming for this small visual anthem to spring and beauty and life. 


  1. Thank you Oriah! Those are heartfelt words, and ones that etch out some of my own recent thoughts, heaviness, and hopes. ♥️

  2. I so needed this. Thank you Oriah for yet another lifeline. So grateful for you and your gift of writing. Lots of Love, Sabine xox

  3. The thing that people don’t tell you about getting older is that this time of life is filled with losses. Do we ever get “good” at this- whatever “good at” might mean?
    I resonate with this. It reminds me when I had my second miscarriage in a year. It didn't hurt any less, but I knew what I needed to do to take care of my grief. After the first miscarriage, I fell into a depression for several months, and started dealing with the grief around the due date. During the second miscarriage (it was a process of several days), I wrote about it, I drew pictures, I cried, I went to a funeral of a friend's parent, and did my own grieving, I talked about it and cried with my women friends, and made plans for a memorial service for others who had experienced the loss of the potentials of little ones. I grieved, but did not get mired down in depression. I have lost two brothers in the last five years. And yes, I learned from the first loss, how to survive the second loss. It doesn't hurt any less, but I know I have a path of grieving, and I know I will survive, perhaps even flourish, through these losses.

    1. Thank you Lorna. These are lessons learned from loss- hard won wisdom. Thank you for sharing it here. And yes- if we do not find ways for our grief to be expressed- even though that is hard- it becomes an even darker journey. Oriah