I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

9 March 2013

No Cure, But ...

I drive back
from the coast, 
a familiar road

into the little town 
I've called home
nearly two decades now.

I am driving towards
a small house on a hill.
Two cats wait for me there.

I arrive to find them
out on the front lawn
enjoying the late afternoon.

There is no husband
waiting as he always did.
I am a widow, not a wife.

There is no cure for death;
it's final. Death itself, though,
finally cured his ills.


I notice how much I like
the little town
that grew to be home.

As I enter its streets
their familiarity enfolds me
like a warm greeting.

The house and the cats
and the grass,
the late afternoon light

and the hilly road 
where I sometimes walk,
feel like mine, where I belong.

Emptiness, absence — these 
are the big truths of my life 
since he died. There is no cure.

But I drive home, I arrive,
I know the place.
I think there may be healing.

Submitted for Poets United's Verse First : The Cure
and for dVerse OpenLinkNight #87


  1. This is a stunning and truly personal poem. It's beautifully written and so true.

  2. This is a lovely poem. The last stanza,so beautiful, "I know the place. I think there may be healing" wow!

  3. Rosemary, I understand the sadness of losing your beloved but knowing he was finally "healed" in the best sense. No more pain. Your words show the depth of your love for him.

    I'm glad you have a good, solid town to call home. There's something about knowing a place well, claiming it for yourself as The Place I Will Be With My Cats. I hope we stay put here in Madison forever. And someday, we will face "the final healing" with blessed assurance.

    This really touched me, Rosemary. Thank you. Amy

  4. I pray for your healing ~ This is very touching Rosemary ~

    These lines struck me the most:

    There is no cure for death;
    it's final. Death itself, though,
    finally cured his ills.

  5. i would like to think there is healing...and that dying cured his ills...oy...one way to look at it for sure...it is hard for me to think of life after losing a loved one like that...i appreciate you sharing that journey though and letting me see...

  6. No, there is no cure for death; but we do find ways to go on, don't we? And yes there is healing in the familiar if we allow it to happen.....

  7. I think familiarity can help to give one peace in many ways, can help to heal. Nicely written, Rosemary.

  8. Emptiness and absence... hopefully, somehow, prayerfully, the big truths will grow to become a bit smaller with time and the healing comfort of familiarity. I'm thankful you have laid this beautiful piece out so gracefully... like one of the cats on the lawn.

  9. Heartfelt poem and the sense of belonging somewhere is still prevalent...a healthy sign and good luck to you;)

  10. A wonderful heart rendering, Rosemary. There is comfort and acceptance in you words. Not a cure, but your poetry surely helps heal.

  11. Another brave write.
    If flows, ebbs, then flows again.
    As all life must, in the face of loss.

  12. I have the feeling that writing this poem helped you tremendously, Rosemary.

    Take care - it was a beautiful write.

  13. Ah, Rosemary, I was so happy to see the positive second stanza -- a warm spot amidst the incurable loss. The contrast itself was warming and hopeful -- even though it reminds us that some losses are not meant to be cured.


  14. PS: re: your note on my blog and this poem. Wouldn't you agree that one of your obsessions (in an empowering way that Hoagland writes) is the loss of your husband -- it feeds your poetry deeply.

    1. True indeed - but after a lifetime of making poems, I was placing this in the larger context of human relationships, which I have aways written about. Now that you remark on it, it's a slightly cary thought to think that this loss and the adjustment to it may be my lasting obsession for the rest of my life!

    2. Thanx for sharing. And I couldn't agree more strongly with what you also wrote on my blog:

      "Ah well, when there is grief, I suppose one may as well get something good out of it. *Wry smile.*"