in the Summerlands
we’ll dance, and laugh and sing.
Play all day long under bright blue skies…
Climb trees to sit amongst the birds, and swing…
Someday in the Summerlands, Hands clasped,
we’ll run along the sand
splashing in the foaming waves.
A thousand games, an endless feast…
kisses, like a vast and starry sky…
And we will not wonder why
our time here was so brief,
our bright joy so laced with grief.
Forever you will dance within our hearts,
so do not mind our salty tide.
We’ve each of us a tender space within,
still sore from that sudden parting stride.
Tis not empty, though this is how it aches,
but filled with our love, folded like thick blankets,
to warm and shelter you along the way…
gifts freely given, yours to take…
Don’t linger for our sake!
Run ahead on that bright trail!
We’ll meet again. Dance, hand in hand,
Share many a long and winding tale…
Someday… in the Summerlands.
Here are my grandson, Zak, and I in the Spring of 2008, just months before his death. This poem is the piece I wrote just hours after Zakary's passing (August 5, 2008), wanting to capture the purity of our love without any of the pain and sorrow that I knew were coming, before the shock wore off and the grieving process began.
Poetry and writing have been some of the best therapy I have experienced in life. Without this outlet, I sometimes wonder how I would have dealt with my stages of grief! Our love for each other does not cease to exist when we run into the illusory wall of Death; it is perhaps the only thing we take with us on that journey. I can say without doubt that the energy of Love is as eternal as the Soul, and while Zak is missed, he is always with us.
The original title is To Ease a Painful Parting. Balm for Grief was a folder title of music I put together in the months afterwards to, well, help ease that painful parting. I know my preference, but I'd love to know which you think is the better title.