Tuesday, July 22, 2014

What Not To Say

She has picture-perfect makeup: magazine cover quality
Her atmosphere is self-assurance and confidence
I don’t know her very well.
Moving briskly to me, saying my name
I am awkward, stiff in her hug
I am that roly-poly beetle, wanting to curl
into a ball, protect myself.
My life is an exposed nerve
silently pleading for the gentlest touch.


She looks at me and matter-of-factly
tramples the wreckage of an already splintered heart
like a hammer coming down on a fractured bone:
"It will be fine. Everything will be fine."

I forget to breathe

bewildered by the well-meaning shattering of it all.

What will be fine?
That my little ones I carried
who nestled and danced beneath my heart
are gone?
That I am a mother who held her babies once, twice–
and never again?
Is fine the Mecca for the grief-stricken?
The Nirvana for the heart-broken?
Is fine what we are to aspire to?

I back away from this lady
who thought she was reassuring
thought to make me feel better
and raked the salt of her confidence into my wounds.

I mumble something I can’t remember later.

My heart wails, snarls–
I am a grizzly mama
with nothing but the memory of my cubs
to protect
to guard
to cherish.

I will never be fine.
I will mourn.
I will cry again and again and 
again.
I will feel empty.
I will learn how to live with the pain
with missing my babies
the hurting and the missing woven into daily life
side by side with joy and peace.
But fine does not exist in this life after their death
I will never be fine.

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