I wrote the following Grief-poem when I was thinking (and deeply feeling) about my friend, whose young-adult daughter had died in a car accident, and a client whose 2 children had died within one year.

I was also reflecting on the loss of my infant son years earlier. I began wondering what I had wanted or needed when I was grieving – and what I could offer to my friend and my client in their grief. This poem is a result of that reflecting.


I thought that my role was

to hold up a lantern

in the dark,



Shine you the path

until your eyesight


and you could take it

on your own.

Turns out that my role is

to sit with you


in the cold,



on the rim of a yawning chasm.

And, at times, to move with you

our foreheads glistening with fear,

clammy hands clasped together –

backs to the wall

groping our way,

occasionally stubbing our toes on diamonds.


5 thoughts on “Diamonds”

  1. There are a limited number who will shine lanterns and fewer still who will sit naked in the pitch dark with the grief stricken. It is a priceless gift to do this for another Karen. What a beautiful post.

  2. It is much harder to “be” with someone grieving than it is to “do” something like hold a lantern. You conveyed this so well in your obviously heart-felt post. Most tend to forget we are human “be”ings, not human doings. Thank you for sharing with us all.

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