Tag Archives: loss

what just happened? life.

Only last week, but how the world has changed. Only last Wednesday I spent some lovely hours with bloggy buddies Yvonne and Lesley. Yvonne was home from Arizona with her daughter, and took time out from family fun days to spend with two local women she’d never met. Three of us gathered round a table, strangers but not strangers, a model of the connecting power of blogging. Friends, who happened to be meeting in person for the first time.

Yvonne, Lesley, me
Yvonne, Lesley, me

Days later, Yvonne was widowed. Ken drifted off gently in his sleep. Well and good, a lovely way to go. Not so much for those left behind. Those still thousands of miles from the Arizona heat. Thousands of miles, and an eternity away from him.

Yvonne has written a remarkable post. You should read it. Hug your loved ones when you can. Send positive, supportive vibes out into the world.

Let’s appreciate our boring lives.

keep moving forward

Bloggy buddies- if you’ve ever wondered about the difference a regular, flawed, person can make, read on.
If you’ve cursed all politicians, read on.

If you’ve wondered how change happens, read on.

Read the properly awesome Michaela Hollywood’s thoughts on being understood, encouraged and inspired by a politician.

Conall McDevitt


This week, that politician resigned from public life in NI. He was right to do so, but we are all the poorer because of it.

Anyone fancy stepping up?

our great loss

I’ll never see Heaney now

Who will tell us the truth about ourselves?

Who will make us listen?

Who will keep us from the herd?

Who will remind us of the hope and the history, our foolishness, and our losses?

Rest now, Seamus.

Clearances, VIII

I thought of walking round and around a space

Utterly empty, utterly a source

Where the decked chestnut tree had lost its place

In our front hedge above the wallflowers.

The white chips jumped and jumped and skitted high.

I heard the hatchet’s differentiated

Accurate cut, the crack, the sigh

And collapse of what luxuriated

Through the shocked tips and wreckage of it all.

Deep-planted and long gone, my coeval

Chestnut from a jam jar in a hole,

Its heft and hush became a bright nowhere,

A soul ramifying and forever

Silent, beyond silence listened for.


The younger one didn’t know him now. He had loved and supported her when she was a child and a growing woman. She played and cuddled and loved.  The joys, the distress and the uncertainties- he’d been there for them all. He’d felt her grow. He’d dried the tears. He made her secure and comfortable. When she was ready, she moved on and away.

Her children don’t need him. They are far away, and they have their own. He’s glad to see them, and their cousins. They come to visit and they bounce and laugh and hug, but they don’t know him. Not like she did, once.

The older woman knew him. She always had. She’d given him to her daughter, over 40 years ago. When he was needed he was there for them. Always. Where else would he be? What else could he do? These were his people.

The older woman lost her health; her mobility, her vision, her speech. He was in the living room, the bedroom, the nursing home. Where she was, he was. One day, she reached round for him. She managed to whisper his name. ‘Peter.’

Her daughter paused, arms full. A name from the past. She remembered it all. She thought of him, for the first time in years. The women held him, and each other, united in their memories, needing the comfort and support.

They were all on a new path. There was still joy and laughter, but great distress and many tears. He was much needed.

Peter: a name given to generations of family pillows.

From January 2012. Written in response to the Write on Edge prompt: personification.