Tag Archives: sorrow

Hindsight happens.

Hindsight happens.

It’s not what you look at that matters; it’s what you see. –Henry David Thoreau

I fully knew the probable outcome going into my situation. I forged ahead anyway.

I’m one of those people. I have to experience the truth for myself. If it isn’t firsthand knowledge it doesn’t feel like truth. It feels like secondary opinion.

Head knowledge is different than heart knowledge, and people like me will choose a broken-hearted wisdom over ignorant bliss every time. Without exception.

I’ve worked my way through the mine fields, planting a plant or two and singing my songs when I could. I came into things with a “can-do” attitude… I will leave humbled.

Willingness and ability are only divided by the variable of opportunity, of circumstance. I’ve at least learned that.

I wouldn’t do it again for any amount of money, or any promise of hope. Promises get broken. Money spends. There isn’t much worth gambling on or hoping for in this world anymore. I never really was the betting kind anyway. I simply took chances, and I took them not to succeed but to learn.

Succeeding in learning isn’t fun. For what it’s worth.

I’ve built a monument to tragedy in memory of innocence. I’m not sure which hurts worse: the memory or the tragedy.

Time measures our lives in units of sorrow, in incremental fractions of longing. In the moment, we only see what we can’t wait to have. Afterwards, we only see what we can’t get back. The “now” is a mistress of misery in this unseeing way, and the world –so madly– keeps spinning.


When The Words Won’t Come (Say Them Anyway)


Recently my life turned itself inside out. It’s less unpleasant than I expected but the feeling of it all has me on my toes and rather dizzy.

I am busy, but I’m here. Thinking of the many incredible and diverse people I encounter on my blog. Reflecting on the countless ways every single one of you contribute to my heart, my spirit, and ultimately my life.

Despite this relentless wilderness I’m in, I find myself still yet contemplating how the world is unfolding its endless majesties for each of you.

Just so you know.

You matter to me, amidst the infinite other things. If you have a minute you can make my day. Whisper your goings and comings my way; I will welcome the news and the sounds of you.

Your ordinary acts of love and hope point to the extraordinary promise that every human life is of inestimable value.

Desmond Tutu

shadows of a feeling


All of the pictures collapsed to the floor. A giant thud. A violent smack. A collective sigh of bitter longing. Decorations from the long ago littering my now. Variously faces facing all the sorrow. How. It happened, while expected least. On my knees, forced to see the many deaths I’ve died in me.
All the lonely faces, calling out my former name. Haunting all my unsung songs and singing broken melodies.
The faces. All those faces.
Gone now, each and every one. A phantom of my life gone by.
Appearing as a wanting does, whispering and taking from me a sense of well being I thought I had. They take it now, those photographs. My joy is always theirs to have. Those faces. All those faces.
Like a wind against a wide-paned window, wild framed windows to my soul; their eyes, their many many eyes, and how they laugh. Come from my past, reminding me of all I lack.
The windows will not open and the blinds here are kept shut.
Above, a turtle type of dove. Just one. Flies now away. But its sadness, all its loveliness, right here in me shall stay.

Someone said there’d be days like this.

Someone said there’d be days like this.

It’s a certain madness.

The coming on of days, relentlessly break. Themselves over my head like the tide’s rushing waves. Crash and collapsing on the sorrow-filled haze that swiftly becomes my own newest now-state; perpetual longing. Days and days. Like some mathematical equation, the series of hours consecutively adding themselves upon one another with exponential unforgiveness; delirious daze. The multiplication of an enigmatic pain. One plus one plus one more, forever. One at a time. Times nine times nine. It never stops and doesn’t care if I like it. Doesn’t ask if I’m ready. Doesn’t let me ask why. Reason and purpose are no longer mine.

Ring around the rosies with my pockets full of worries and the air is growing heavy and it’s good to be alive. Depression is a dance and so I shall, I vow — again again. Oh my oh my, pretend pretend. The dancing floor is riddled with holes but they all lead nowhere. Thousand no’s, thousand maybe’s. Rocks don’t roll. They only bury.

Dance they say. Without a partner, on display and the music is broken and refuses to play but dance dance dance dance anyway. To what. For why. Because because, and heaven lays her head to cry. Though not for me, for what I’m not. A robot in a shrinking box. The moon is laughing at my thoughts. I still can’t find the sense I got that everything will be alright and this will pass like dreams at night.

Am I dreaming? Someone screaming silent tears that wet the sky. A loud distorted lullaby. Waxing, waning. No complaining. Full and empty, dissipating. I wake up mostly twice a day, the rest I close my eyes to stay surrendered blind to pain inside that nothing gives me space to hide.

The why’s and where’s are far behind. Memories; they’re over now. (Down my head to sleep shall lie. Itself, it hurts. It grows in spurts.) So sink me like a sunken bow. The ship has sailed, float on with wow… -less proof that I’m still breathing.

All that we see or seem…

All that we see or seem…

“When I grow up, I want to be an astronaut, but I want to land on a star.”

“…Honey, stars are big balls of burning gas. They aren’t solid.”

“I know, Grammy. But that doesn’t mean it’s not possible, it only means we can’t imagine it yet. And I also want to be an Archeologist in Egypt. And a Marine Biologist. And I want to find out what words look like to people before they know how to read.”

She just looked at me and smiled her usual ear-to-ear smile, and hugged me with her usual five minute hug. She loved me half as much as I loved her. And she loved me a lot.

I think back to the quieter moments from my childhood, the ones where sunlight had a certain melodious way of sending a sense of sweet sorrow into my soul as it began to set outside my Grammy’s living room window; the ones where the ticking of the massive grandfather clock set my mind in motion with a certain angst and longing for the inevitable passing of time to somehow skip over me & my Grammy’s summer days so they could last forever… Even then, I somehow knew the pain of loss before I’d ever had to meet it face to face.

My Grammy always cried as she waved goodbye, the tail-lights from my dad’s pickup truck casting an ominous glow against the fading palm of my Grammy’s loving hand. I understood at a youngest age why she cried. Every single week. Every single time I had to go. I knew the day would come when saying goodbye would only be a distant memory.

It’s funny how the memories can be so incredibly specific that way. I remember her smell so well that it floods over me — even fifteen years later — when I simply close my eyes.

I dream about her tomatoes. Picking them. Her, and me, and all of my boys out there with us. These dreams are not a slumbering escape from the reality of her being gone; they are an awakening reality of the slumbering life I lead without her in it. These dreams are more real than the long-ago memories we once created; they are the memories we’re creating now.

I can’t say I believe in ghosts, or that I know somehow that it’s not just my imagination coming alive when I dream. But I can say — without reason or justification — that my Grammy does, in fact, visit me. We have moments together now, after all these years, when we truly do pause time. We put the world on hold and we sit back, holding hands, sharing love like a cup of fresh lemonade. Making jokes about bitter old men. Laughing. Talking about all of the things I worried I’d never have the chance to discuss with her: motherhood, marriage, growing up… That sort of thing.

In many ways, I became an astronaut and an archeologist and a marine biologist and I most certainly have discovered what words look like to people before they learn how to read… Although I don’t travel to Egypt or make day-trips beyond the Milky Way or spend long weekends deep sea diving; still, I’ve found the most unique opportunities to develop these fascinations into a deeply useful, deeply gratifying use for my meager existence.

Motherhood has a way of doing that.

I miss my Grammy much like we all miss aspects of our childhood, I’m sure. But mostly I’m just immensely grateful to have been given the opportunity to know and love and be loved by such a magical human being. I hope you each have such a profound connection, such an indescribable blessing at some point in your journeys. Whether in Egypt or on the moon, or in your very living room.