Client Grief, photo by James C. Henderson
Categories Poems in the Time of Pandemic, Poetry
Location New Brighton, Minnesota
Date April 11, 2020

James C. Henderson

for those we’ve lost

These days we sit in our houses
and wait to join you or begin the search for you
but know not in which direction to go.

We listen to the thunder
the rain that whips the trees
the wind that lashes the mind

but we fear not the lightning
nor the falling tree.
Nothing is worse than losing you.

You were the goodness in this life
virtue in a world of injustice.
Which wrong may we right to honor you?

What may we do to escape this loneliness of air and food
and cleansing rain that leaves the earth fresh
but absent of you?

Help up the fallen man?
Chain ourselves to the gates of the torture center?
The gates of the White House?

To an old growth pine?
Look into the maw of the pipeline?
Into the barrel of a gun?

Lie down in front of a bulldozer on ancestral land?
Say “no” to a cop?
Save the drowning child?

Into which burning building may we rush
to be closer to you?