Because attention attracts gratitude and gratitude expands joy, it's time for Thankful Thursday.
This week I'm thankful for a bounty of kindness: letters, cards and emails in response to a piece I shared here with you recently.
It turns out the platitudes are true: In life's rough season, friends do make a difference. Childhood friends. Writing friends. Even blog friends, people I've never met but who offer comfort and companionship across computer screens.
When my head and heart are a jumble, I reach for paper and pen to make sense. This process yields letters, poems, wishes, regrets and grocery lists. This week, in an unexpected turnabout a friend wrote a poem for me. What a surprise and honor. Thank you Shirley.
5 Oct '16 to Drew
What you wrote today is beautiful.
I am upset for you
For you were clearly upset
But I shrugged it off without tears
though they were close
for I did not know who was ill or dying or dead
I shrug it off as most of the world does
the drownings in the small seas around the Mediterranean
Or the deaths of those crossing the desert
those who might prefer drowning
to escaping across borders where there is no water
And so I did not share your grief
the expression of it so great
I thought the person must be important
Since it was not your husband
and without a child
who else could tear your heart so
Perhaps the person was no more important
than many of the predecessors
but like a stone,
last in a long line of stones,
that finally presses enough
to collapse the lungs
to remove the last breath
I have aged to a softness that makes
my throat thicken . . .
my tears run over . . .
my breath too shallow to allow speech . . .
all at the mere saying 'sad'
with not even a story attached
There is so much pain and grief
I assume it all . . .
and it is devastating
I pretend humor, nonchalance . . .
I deny that I am touched . . .
as a matter of survival.
It's Thankful Thursday. What are you thankful for today?