Saturday, November 27, 2010

Upon Learning of Your Passing

(for Laura Hershey)

I stared hard at the computer screen,
trying to decide if this was someone’s idea
of a very sick Facebook joke.

Then I make no sense for a few minutes,
as I tried to find the right number of verys
to express my heart's aching.
“Very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, ver…”
until my assistant insists I stop and tell her
exactly what happening.

Suddenly winning Nanowrimo in 3 and a half days
doesn’t seem so important,
especially when my characters mundane, everyday, basic actions
seem to have hit an abrupt pause.

I eat
assistant bought Chinese dinner,
watch Something’s Gotta Give for the thousandth time,
and take a 90 minute nap
after failing to add even on meaningful sentence
to my tale of a young ballerina’s journey
toward self discovery.

I venture to my local mega-grocery
hoping chocolate, which I buy with change only,
will recall the muse to mind.

After one-third of bag of Reese’s
I’m no happier or more motivated
just a little stomach sick.

somehow I find the focus
to write this poem
and decide- perhaps cruelly-
to make one of characters endure
a death, too.

I decide
these are fitting
literary tributes
to a genius lost
even if it's only a rough draft.


  1. Multiple representative whom we all cherish
    Now for whom we all say Kaddish.

  2. Though my only contact with Laura was through Wompo, your poem touches me again and again with what "happens" when try to digest news about loss and especially the way a writer might respond. Thanks. (Nice concept for the overall blog too.)