Notes from the Waxhaws

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We’re brought into this world alone…and leave this world, alone. In between, when we enter into relationship with someone, we have the intoxicating illusion that we become one with the other…that we are no longer alone. In some strange and beautiful way…for a while…we share identity.

I’ve been finding that, for me at least,  a major part of the grieving process has been coming to terms with the reality that I am once again alone…that half of this shared identity is now missing. For a while, part of myself was sublimated…hidden away…for some greater good. Now…it’s natural to feel incomplete, and it takes a while to rediscover and recover that part of ourselves that, for a while, was lost. And…to recognize that the time has come to get reacquainted with ourselves. Perhaps…that too is part of the healing process?

I recently heard a poem by Derek Walcott that crystallizes this thought as only poetry can…

Love After Love

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

~Derek Walcott

Written by Jim

December 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm

Posted in Grieving, Literature, Musings, Poetry

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2 Responses

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  1. It takes time. A few weeks back, on someone else’s blog I saw this line, “When you’re going through hell, keep going.” Grief is not hell but the pain…a commonality. I believe the ‘keep going’ is a commonality too. There is more. No substitute. Just more.


    December 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    • Yes…definitely takes time. And no easy way around it…just through it.


      December 30, 2012 at 7:48 pm

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