Jennifer Cox is a freelance writer and poet living in the foothills of Sliabh na mBan (Sleeve-nah-Mon) in County Tipperary, Ireland. Jennifer is a regular facilitator of poetry projects and events and is a passionate believer in writing as a cathartic process.
I am carried through this house on waves of sadness.
Picking up, putting down,
to realign what has been tilted off its axis.
Or perhaps I am building a dam
of soft pillows and blankets
to absorb this rising tide of tears.
A fabricated womb,
a material wailing wall to muffle this grief
that has bitten like sharp teeth
into marshmallow hearts,
leaving the softest parts exposed.
This grief is not mine,
but the salt of our tears must taste the same.
And I cannot stem the flow
knowing you will never smell your child again.
For you, I inhale all the deeper.
Wonderfully moving poem, Jenny! That whopper of a line—”knowing you will never smell your child again”—that preceded that last profound landing line hits home for readers (OK, all of us) who’ve watched people we love suffer great loss. Thank you!