Monday, April 3, 2017

There are No Words

There are no words. 

I've written this myself, marveling at the silliness of using words to try and say there aren't any.  

There are, in fact, so many words. None of them come close to the pain and despair, but they do fill in the gaps from the howling sobs and silent shock. 

Words matter. 

People who've taken the time to send me words, knowing their inevitable hollowness, but reaching out the best way they can to fill that gap and let me know I am not alone brings small measures of comfort.  I posted a photo of Evan and I on a Border Collie group I belong to and in the past 24 hours, more than 150 people have left me little notes of condolence. Many have faced the same heartbreak with their beloved border collies.

And so many of my beloved writers have done the same for me, years before, leaving a trail of sadness at the human condition for me to hold onto as I walk similar forests of grief.

Sometimes, in my bitterest moments, I can be side by side with Robert Frost, a man broken by tragedy, when he writes in a bereaved mother's voice, over the loss of her child, 

The nearest friends can go
With anyone to death, comes so far short
They might as well not try to go at all.
No, from the time when one is sick to death,
One is alone, and he dies more alone.
Friends make pretense of following to the grave,
But before one is in it, their minds are turned
And making the best of their way back to life
And living people, and things they understand.
But the world’s evil. I won’t have grief so

If I can change it.  ("Home Burial")

But no one can change it. He knew that. I know it. Even the mother in his poem probably knows it, eventually.

Other times, the phrase from Hamlet drifts across my sadness, "I shall not look upon his like again" and tearfully consider, as I stare at my photos, on what it means to look upon the real thing and upon a likeness that cannot replace it. 

But the one that's floated across the most is the last half of Funeral Blues  by W.H. Auden.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now; put out every one,
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun,
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;

For nothing now can ever come to any good.


Post a Comment