The arbiter of all sorrow

How do you lose something you never had? That
perceived loss contains an imagined belonging that
contains an unacknowledged loss that is premised
upon a right to belong and the circles get narrower
and narrower until it reaches a point where both
grief and denial exist. Grief that there is denial and
denial of that grief. Is that how the earth drifts
through seasons? How the sky needs a dark cloud?
The ocean is the arbiter of all sorrow. Who owns
the shore that it leaves again and again? A bird
that loves the rain not knowing when it will come,
not knowing how long it will stay, learns twenty ways
to say the word drought. It sings of a remembered
rain. It sings of a forgotten rain. Birdsong, if you can
translate it, is the original dictionary of contradiction.

11 thoughts on “The arbiter of all sorrow

  1. “The ocean is the arbiter of all sorrow.” What a wonderful line that is! I love this poem, especially the lines about birds. And “Birdsong…is the original dictionary of contradiction” is another gem. Wow.


  2. You have learned almost 30 ways to remember in your powerful verses: love, pathos, longing, grief, empathy, desire, hope, faith et al … you’ve got this!!


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