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Poems about grief

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Home Forums Helping Hand Poems about grief

  • This topic has 19 replies, 10 voices, and was last updated 1 week, 6 days ago by VM-Apples23.
  • Creator
  • #14077
    GL friend

    Hello, I thought I would add one of my favourite poems.

    The Window by Rumi

    Your body is away from me
    but there is a window open
    from my heart to yours.
    From this window, like the moon
    I keep sending news secretly.

    For me this poem is about continuing to feel connected to my mum who passed away in 2014 at just 48 years of age. Even though she is gone, she knows how Im going and all that goes on in my life because of the window thats open between our hearts. She is well and safe now. I know this in my heart.

Viewing 10 replies - 1 through 10 (of 11 total)
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  • #14148

    Hi @gl-friend, thank you so much for posting the first piece on our Helping Hand Topic. This is such a beautiful poem that so perfectly describes continuing the bond with our loved ones who have passed away. How comforting for you to know in your heart that your Mum is still with you and that she is content.

    We welcome all community members to post something meaningful that has helped or informed you through your grief process.


    In this poem by Marjorie Pizer she describes her grief process as a rebirth, giving hope to those who sometimes feel like they’re drowning in an ocean of grief.

    I am emerging from an ocean of grief,
    From the sorrow of many deaths,
    From the inevitability of tragedy,
    From the losing of love,
    From the terrible triumph of destruction.
    I am seeing the living that is to be lived,
    The laughter that is to be laughed,
    The joy that is to be enjoyed,
    The loving that is to be accomplished.
    I am yearning at last
    The tremendous triumph of life (Pizer, 1992, p. 44)

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 3 months ago by onlinecommunity.

    Here’s an absolutely beautiful poem by John Roedel, about alienation, grief and tuning into what’s happening in the body as a pathway to healing (includes great therapeutic first aid advice!)

    my brain and
    heart divorced

    a decade ago

    over who was
    to blame about
    how big of a mess
    I have become

    they couldn’t be
    in the same room
    with each other

    now my head and heart
    share custody of me

    I stay with my brain
    during the week

    and my heart
    gets me on weekends

    they never speak to one another

    – instead, they give me
    the same note to pass
    to each other every week

    and their notes they
    send to one another always
    says the same thing:

    “This is all your fault”

    on Sundays
    my heart complains
    about how my
    head has let me down
    in the past

    and on Wednesday
    my head lists all
    of the times my
    heart has screwed
    things up for me
    in the future

    they blame each
    other for the
    state of my life

    there’s been a lot
    of yelling – and crying


    lately, I’ve been
    spending a lot of
    time with my gut

    who serves as my
    unofficial therapist

    most nights, I sneak out of the
    window in my ribcage

    and slide down my spine
    and collapse on my
    gut’s plush leather chair
    that’s always open for me

    ~ and I just sit sit sit sit
    until the sun comes up

    last evening,
    my gut asked me
    if I was having a hard
    time being caught
    between my heart
    and my head

    I nodded

    I said I didn’t know
    if I could live with
    either of them anymore

    “my heart is always sad about
    something that happened yesterday
    while my head is always worried
    about something that may happen tomorrow,”
    I lamented

    my gut squeezed my hand

    “I just can’t live with
    my mistakes of the past
    or my anxiety about the future,”
    I sighed

    my gut smiled and said:

    “in that case,
    you should
    go stay with your
    lungs for a while,”

    I was confused
    – the look on my face gave it away

    “if you are exhausted about
    your heart’s obsession with
    the fixed past and your mind’s focus
    on the uncertain future

    your lungs are the perfect place for you

    there is no yesterday in your lungs
    there is no tomorrow there either

    there is only now
    there is only inhale
    there is only exhale
    there is only this moment

    there is only breath

    and in that breath
    you can rest while your
    heart and head work
    their relationship out.”

    this morning,
    while my brain
    was busy reading
    tea leaves

    and while my
    heart was staring
    at old photographs

    I packed a little
    bag and walked
    to the door of
    my lungs

    before I could even knock
    she opened the door
    with a smile and as
    a gust of air embraced me
    she said

    “what took you so long?”

    • This reply was modified 3 months, 3 weeks ago by onlinecommunity.

    Hi @Michael, welcome to the forums. And thank you so much for posting this poem – it is so poignant and beautifully written.

    It’s great to see our Community Members adding to our Helping Hand topic.

    Perhaps some of our community members have resources to help those who are struggling with upcoming father’s day?


    VM – OnAJourney


    Thank you for sharing those beautiful poems. One of my favourite poems on grief is by John O’Donohue from his book “To Bless the Space Between Us – A Book of Blessings”. I can relate very well to this overwhelm of different feelings and the often seemingly endless reappearance of grief in moments when I least expect it. May we have patience as our guide through this unsettling experience of grief.

    For Grief

    When you lose someone you love,
    Your life becomes strange,
    The ground beneath you becomes fragile,
    Your thoughts make your eyes unsure;
    And some dead echo drags your voice down
    Where words have no confidence
    Your heart has grown heavy with loss;
    And though this loss has wounded others too,
    No one knows what has been taken from you
    When the silence of absence deepens.

    Flickers of guilt kindle regret
    For all that was left unsaid or undone.

    There are days when you wake up happy;
    Again inside the fullness of life,
    Until the moment breaks
    And you are thrown back
    Onto the black tide of loss.
    Days when you have your heart back,
    You are able to function well
    Until in the middle of work or encounter,
    Suddenly with no warning,
    You are ambushed by grief.

    It becomes hard to trust yourself.
    All you can depend on now is that
    Sorrow will remain faithful to itself.
    More than you, it knows its way
    And will find the right time
    To pull and pull the rope of grief
    Until that coiled hill of tears
    Has reduced to its last drop.

    Gradually, you will learn acquaintance
    With the invisible form of your departed;
    And when the work of grief is done,
    The wound of loss will heal
    And you will have learned
    To wean your eyes
    From that gap in the air
    And be able to enter the hearth
    In your soul where your loved one
    Has awaited your return
    All the time.


    Amazing poem, thank you for sharing.


    Thanks for the information!


    Hi, Thanks for sharing these amazing poems. One poem that resonated with me is the following…

    Separation by W.S. Merwin

    Your absence has gone through me
    Like thread through a needle.
    Everything I do is stitched with its color.

    I interpreted this as my experience of loss is the colour that’s stitched in my life and my future. This experience is a part of me and accepting that has allowed me to grow but I know its always there and that’s okay.


    @VM-Zelaris_20, that is a lovely poem. It speaks to me about the healing aspect of grieving, the stitching back together and accommodating what has changed form. It reminds me of Kintsugi (golden joinery), the Japanese method of repairing broken pottery with conspicuous gold seams. The repairs become what you celebrate, rather than what you try to hide. May you all find comfort.


    Hello all, I love the poems, I relate to them all, especially the Rumi and the John Roedel ones. I’d like to write poetry and music about my own experience of grief and loss, as well as gains I’ve made in adversity, and I’ve made some of those too i.e. I’ve learnt to stand up for myself, and to own my emotions and my rights to them.

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