Drag of Sorrow

Puffing on these veins
Your death has sucked
The life out of me
With a missing smile
And sharpened teeth
Plunging your heartbeat
Into the graveyard of memory
I find it hard to remember
Without choking on the chills of
The way we played
The melody that danced between us
Now a string of fractured notes
Lost without a rhythm
Try to recreate your scent
By burning every last cigarette
Until 3 a.m
When our conversations usually ended
Now the vapors hang the loudest
Death stole you
Before we were ready
It’s the heaviest drag of sorrow
My lungs exposed
Decomposed and unsteady



You disappeared
Into the moon
I seek your glow
Since your body has vanished
You are but a hush
You are but ashes
I cry out for you
But you don’t come
Just a recurring blue wind
The blackness, now my only friend
You are but a memory
You are but a tragedy
My ache worsens everyday
And nothing remedies me
Since there’s only scars
Where you used to breathe
I watched you go down
I screamed and spun out
As they took you away
Trading organs
Like it were a game
You are but a number
You are but a price tag
If I could leave
I’d disappear too
I disclose no blame
Only envy toward you
You are free from this sickness
The dying world
How it schemes and tricks us
You are but a whisper
You are but a dream
And I die every second
To be that too

One year


One year tomorrow
That my heart met a new sorrow
Hello death
Please go away
Now you want my brother
Fuck you
But death laughs
Of course it does
One year and I’m still in denial
One year
And I think I’ll play your voice
On my machine
With a bottle of pills and whiskey
And bawl my eyes out
Begging for an eternal sleep
One year
Without your smile
Wider than the wingspan
Of an eagle
Wish I was flying with you
One year
Without your laughter
There’s no metaphor for that picture
Had to be there
I love you so much
My hearts a crumpled mess
I really want to talk to you
My voice is lost
From screaming out
The only answer
Will come when death takes me

The first rule of grief: There are NO rules

After my daughter died all I wanted to do was scream. All the time at everyone.  Every passing person with a smile, every church preacher with their offer of salvation and hope, and every happy full family.  I would see mothers with their children and my soul would die again. I wanted to be dead myself because the pain of losing a child is excruciating. I mean absolutely horrifying and excruciating and sick and awful.  Many, many people tried to offer me advice, “oh you must be on this stage of grief, it will pass”, “you’re not really like this, you’re just grieving”, “don’t worry you will have more children” or one of the hardest “you will see her again one day and she is in a much better place”.  What?  Although I believe in God, I feel that last statement is what I like to call a “throw statement” It is basically like seeing someone freezing in the cold and instead of bringing them inside one just throws them a warm blanket and walks away.  Honestly I have no real fact that I will see my daughter again or any concept of what that would look like- souls without faces and no memory of life on earth? She’s a grown angel now? What? what is it? So none of us really knows, not the boy in the movie who says it’s for real or the girl who draws the paintings-as for me, I don’t believe them-so save it and don’t say it.  Now I can say with love in my heart that it is very hard for people who have not experienced loss to know what to say so they end up saying the wrong things a lot of the time-so, I know it is not their fault and these people who said these things are not bad.  I am sharing my experience though, on the other side of these statements.  I became bitter toward so many people who, for whatever reason, couldn’t really be there.  I became bitter to actors in TV shows holding their babies, I became bitter toward people and their “miracles”-I didn’t want to hear it, my miracle died in my arms.  What I needed was someone to sit by me and hold me and not say anything, I needed…someone.  I guess that someone should have been my husband.  But his abuse and anger only increased after her loss. He would have moments of sadness but it quickly turned to rage.  I learned to keep quiet about what I was feeling.  I stopped crying in front of him, I stopped crying at all.  If I needed to I saved it for when I was in the shower, while my son was napping and my husband was at work.  I would be on my knees screaming and crying and begging to be put out of my misery, begging for an angel…someone…someone to help me.  That light didn’t come so I continued to shove her down like a stowaway in my heart.  I put a plastic smile on, brushed my hair long and straight, every lash in place. I  kept the house clean.  I scrubbed all the ugliness away, all the ugliness that made everyone uncomfortable.  I made myself bleed on the inside just to appease the outsiders. I waited til he got high and passed out then I took my place as a guard over my son. I made sure he was breathing in  and out, I would stare out the windows from his bedroom and watch for intruders. I would not let anything happen to my son. My “paranoia” only enraged my husband, so after I silently kept watch I would slip back into bed around 5 in the morning and wait til he left for work, so I could fall apart again.  This pattern of survival continued and severely worsened compromising my own life.  I eventually had to become my own angel and save myself.  I did that by leaving my husband and beginning a new battle of survival.  So my daughter stayed deep within my chained soul.  She was and is buried so far down within me.  She seeps out when I start overflowing and becomes like the drops of water spitting out of the boiling kettle, burning my heart.

A year ago (in 16 days it will be a year) my brother died- no warning for that either. It was awful and horrific. My brother is one of the few people on the earth who I feel really understood the depth of the twisted me. So after he died I pretty much wanted to kill myself. The thing about losing someone is that parts of you die too but not all the parts, you only wish they would because it hurts so much just to breathe in a world where they no longer share the same air. His loss on top of the loss of my marriage, survival of traumas and the loss of my daughter, really pushed me to the point of death or surrender. I had to choose surrender because I still have two other amazing children here who desperately need me. I surrendered and finally got help. A few tries in I found someone, a counselor, who truly cares about me, not money but me. So…I’m slowly digging up old graves. I’m saying her name…Isabelle. I am not that plastic face smiling in the storefront window.  I am pissed that my life hurts so much and I’m not going to be quiet anymore. And you know what I’ve been told…that’s ok. That’s healthy and normal. It is something I should have done a long time ago. So I don’t save all my tears for the shower, but I don’t stay in bed all day either. I am being guided on a journey I can’t avoid anymore. I am walking through the grief. It is totally terrifying but I am facing it- slowly, but walking in it just the same. And let me tell you it is not a chart of seven stages- it is crazy and messy. It is up and down. It is nightmares and it is dreaming. It is dark and it is frightening. It’s beyond my control and I want to be a control freak. It is crying in the kitchen in the middle of cooking dinner. It is panic in the middle of my class when the teacher says the word cadaver. I think of my daughter- cold and blue at the hospital. It is PTSD when I wake up at 2 in the morning shaking because I feel like it’s happening again- one of my kids is dying and I missed saving them too. It’s a process of healing and forgiving myself. It’s death threats against my own pulse. It is constant questions with no answers. Grief is alive and hell but all I can say is don’t shove it down if possible. I wish I hadn’t but I know I had to. At that time it was my only choice and a soldier doesn’t cry in the battle- he puts on his armor and fights. Now I’m under the shelter and I am grieving and missing my loves. And I am owning it. It is outside the constraint of any type of rules. Remember that. It is a tornado shattering your soul and it is standing in the middle of it and feeling every last thing it throws your way, until the eye of misery begins to subside and we can catch our breath again.



So, I’m getting ready to go out for my birthday celebration.  Honestly I was surprised when a group of friends insisted on celebrating me-it feels really good.  The older I get, birthdays become a bit more obsolete or maybe even a disappointment when I realize that as an adult the celebration of birth is more of an afterthought to the priorities of mommyhood and other what nots. Anyway, this year has been a rare gift. I’ve already been flown to another state in celebration of my Aquarian month and it was wonderful.  It’s not like being a kid and having to subtlety drop hints (or not so subtle as the case of my babies) More like a super busy adult being caught off guard by already being able to see my two best friends and having three separate outings planned for me. Really, this never happens… but I’m letting it come upon me like a golden sun and as uncomfortable as it might feel, I am accepting the love.

But the thing about losing someone, the thing about grief..is that it hurts even more on birthdays, holidays…any type of elation is pinged with major grief pangs. Last year at this time my brother and I were talking- he was alive. He was doing what he does and making me laugh. He was being unconditional in his loving beautiful ways. During this time last year my brother and I were playing phone tag and now I’m grateful for that because I have a grip of messages with his voice. I have him singing happy birthday to me, I have him rapping happy birthday to me..in a voice imitating slim shady. Just him, making me laugh, being goofy. Damn I miss him so much and I’ve listened to his messages at least a hundred times. Ahhh! That’s how it feels. I’m completely split in two. Half Happy; I have my support group who has stuck with and supported me through my heart breaking and at times joyful journey- happy that they are remembering me and honoring me and making me feel loved and special. The other half of me is stuck in a muddied world. My legs are frozen in an ice pond and I can’t move. I still can’t believe he is gone. I’m not ever going to get that call again. How can this be real? Put the brakes on! Stop! I don’t want to go through this season without hearing from him. “They” say not to live in the past but that is where half of me is. Stuck on repeat, on an answering machine.

Hey there big bro
I miss you so much
My soul longs for yours
To touch
To hold
I hear your voice
I have memorized it
The tone the pitch
Your humor
Your uniqueness
All I want for my birthday
Is to wake from this nightmare
I still can’t believe
I’ve lost my brother
I beg for signs
That you can hear me
I’m still part normal
But these days
I feel half crazy

I freaking love you J
Love, me

Dying Birthday Blues


Dying birthday blues

ruffle my feathers

and drown me in doom

I miss you oh I miss you bro

I miss you oh I miss you so

I’m in a state of emergency

The suffering is spiked without you

I’m feeling the sense of urgency

The torment where you once were

I play your birthday song

Over and over

On my melodic tape recorder

It was last year

Messages from my big brother

I had no clue

The shadows would take you

Grant my birthday wish

And let them absorb me too

Another year older

Another second closer

To you

To you

To you

Love, your little sis

My Joe again

The day could no longer hide from us
The past screams terror
Remembering we no longer live there
In the garage with a shotgun
And borrowed arrows
I found you then
Steadying my restless aim
Laughing like we were little
The roots of best friends
Catching up to us again
There was a pang in your honesty
As you reached out to protect me
The strife and bad memories
Together we buried
With quick arms
And heavy shovels
Covered with the scent of this time

Life’s too short for us to die
When you had to leave
The hours scattered too quickly

Like a bird from a hunter
You flew away from me
Our homes
Our lives
Not like we thought
But we have repaired
The gaping hole
With soft hands and gentle love
An understanding
From the kids we once were
To the bond that grew us here
Apart once more
But never letting go