General Poetry posted April 19, 2021

This work has reached the exceptional level
The death of a child

Sand Fleas and Sharks

by Susan Larson

The death of a child
ushers you to unknown places,
in terms of emotion,
in terms of perceptions.

One moment, you're relaxing on the shore
with friends
and complaining about
the occasional sand flea bite
That pain is readily understood

Then a wave grabs
and sweeps you into the ocean
where a shark bites.

You feel pain you never imagined
and you're alone
in unfamiliar territory.

You return to shore,
you try to explain your pain to your friends,
but the worst pain they know
is a bite from a sand flea.

But it's not just the pain you can't explain.
You have a new awareness
there is infinitely more to life
than what those on shore can see.

You see the ocean floor
with coral reefs and rock formations,
things beyond imagination.

You have tapped into the vastness of creation
to a higher degree.
with no way to describe
what you see or feel.

You have a new awareness of a greater dimension,
and you know your beloved child is part of it
only gone before you
to a place infinitely more beautiful and immense
than those on shore cannot see.

You still get annoyed with the sand fleas,
but you now realize how trivial they are.

And even if your friends don't understand your pain,
you know there is a Greater Someone out there
who does.

My Faith contest entry



This was converted from an essay to a free verse poem. Something new for me. I appreciate any comments that would improve it. In 1998, my youngest son died in a car wreck. Since I was a writer, my pastor invited me to chronicle my grief in the church newsletter. This was the first one. When I entered this contest, I misread that it was poetry. So, I figured, why not challenge myself? I, too, in my writing, am entering a new dimension! ;) I also watched my 39 year old son die after a six year battle with brain cancer.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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