His body was no longer outside the spark
that had sputtered and flamed,
that had fluttered and beaten
that, guttered by his limb and skin,
had flickered and flown in him.
She tried to breathe it in.



For my own prompt on Real Toads based on the idea of an outsider or outsider art.  Pic is mine, based on a pieta at the Metropolitan Museum, but the poem is not meant to refer to the pieta or to be overtly religious.  (I am just using this drawing, in other words, because I like it.) 

A warning that I may post a lot (if I can) in the next few days to catch up to April quotients.  Ha.  We’ll see, I guess.  k. 


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14 Comments on “Mourning”

  1. Kerry Says:

    This poem manages to encapsulate that moment of loss perfectly. i felt an unbidden intake of breath myself.

  2. This reads to me like a snake eating it’s own tail.

  3. Jim Says:

    Likened to a dying bird, so heart rending. We were at the dr’s office this morning, and brought up our 7-year-old granddaughter. Her son died four years ago, a late teen just graduating from high school.
    What to say? Of course she still hurts.

  4. I find the last line of trying to cope despite the unbearable pain with strong words that make me think of physical pain…

  5. whimsygizmo Says:

    Oh, this is sadly beautiful. As mourning itself can be.

  6. That last line is my favorite. It reads like the first ragged breath we take, after the crying is all done… and we realize that we must go on.

  7. Rosemary Nissen-Wade Says:

    Beautiful poem! (And oh, how I relate.)

  8. Rasz Says:

    Beautiful take on mourning.

  9. oh wow! this was so Not how i saw this picture. but now i DO!

  10. M Says:

    that is a phenomenal conceit, K – imaginative, well executed, and succinct ~

  11. Laura Bloomsbury Says:

    felt like visitation from an angel who had taken form

  12. sanaarizvi Says:

    You capture the feeling of loss so tenderly.. sigh..

  13. Brendan Says:

    The Pieta is a polished marble of mourning, and as icon of personal grief it takes us very far. The winding sheet of rhyme holds a mourning so intense it isn’t clear what we’re outside of any more. Fine fine stuff.

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