Sunday, June 19, 2011

remembering bOB

Yesterday was your birthday. Today is Father's Day. Missing you terribly. And trying to deal with it the only way I know how: writing.

Father’s Day

for R.E.B. III, 6/18/65 to 8/30/10

The blue pen flows, the gospel radio brays.
This day is different from all other days.
No mass, no kaddish, everything's been said.
We’ll plant a young tree with the kids instead,
right near the playground. Now we say Amen.
It’s bluegrass now. A love we shared. I met
my fiddle hero at that festival,
your gig. He died just two years later: old,
a lifelong smoker. You were forty-five,
ate vegetarian and rode your bike.
Six-two, one hundred sixty pounds of brawn.
I wonder if they’ll miss me when I’m gone—
the dobro twangs, the banjo taunts my ear,
the upright bass is—well, upright. Too clear.

Friday, June 03, 2011

grief for kids

"The grieving process is different for children," asserts this article. The piece is about a support group for bereaved kids, which sounds similar to the one that I have been taking Bobby to at The Center for Hope at the Cohen Children's Medical Center.

The group has helped him a lot--perhaps the most important thing is to be around other kids who have lost a parent or other close family member, to make them all feel less alone, less different. The kids get into small groups by age to do crafts and other activities designed to help them process their loss. Meanwhile, the parents meet in one big circle and learn about the kids' activities, and talk about how they can help their kids (and, often, themselves) through it. At the end, the kids come back into the "big room" and we celebrate birthdays and sing a special song written just for the Center.

The kids have been having some trouble sleeping some nights of late--not as easy to get to sleep, and waking up in the middle of the night or early morning. I'm looking into some grief-related services for children with special needs, so that I can get some support for Stella, too.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011 issue 27!

The new issue of is up and running! Go here to read it. If I say so myself, we have a very nice poetry section, featuring work by Valentina Cano, Shanna Compton, Derek Otsuji, Elizabeth Poreba, and Dana Elyse Tarasavage.

Check it out!