“Unfortunately, though, avoiding it [pain] robs us of life, of the now, of the sense of living spirit. Mostly I have tried avoiding it by staying very busy, working too hard , trying to achieve as much as possible.
You can often avoid the pain by trying to fix other people; shopping helps in a pinch, as does romantic obsession. Martyrdom can’t be beat. While too much exercise works for many people, it doesn’t for me, but I have found that a stack of magazines can be numbing and even mood altering. But the bad news is that whatever you use to keep the pain at bay, it robs you of the flecks and nuggets of gold that FEELING GRIEF will give you. A fixation can keep you nicely defined and give you the illusion that your life has not fallen apart. But since your life may have indeed fallen apart, the illusion won’t hold up forever. If you are lucky and brave, you will be willing to bear disillusion. You begin to cry and writhe and yell and then to keep on crying ; and then finally, grief ends up giving you the two best things: softness and illumination.”

-Anne Lammot, Traveling Mercies

Just go ahead.
Let it wash over you without fighting.
Heart broken and suspended in a moment.
Our blood is the same ,
thick as thieves and stubborn as hell.
What do we do?
What do we do?
The tears crowd my eyes and fall.
Hot and fat,
little dumplings of love and loyalty.
Swerving down my face in irregular fluidity.
Offerings of understanding.
Offerings of empathy.

I will roll up my sleeves with you.
I will walk in your shoes with you.
I will wear your sadness.
I will wear your shame.
I will wear your wounds.
Promises I know I can’t keep but make regardless.

What I know for certain is,
I will not leave you alone.
We won’t leave you alone.
Even when you drift away to your island.
We will be watching your back from the shore.
And if we are lucky and brave,
we will fall apart and see how it feels to tell the truth.