Talking To Grief

Ah, Grief, I should not treat you
like a homeless dog
who comes to the back door
for a crust, for a meatless bone.
I should trust you.

I should coax you
into the house and give you
your own corner,
a worn mat to lie on,
your own water dish.

You think I don't know you've been living
under my porch.
You long for your real place to be readied
before winter comes. You need
your name,
your collar and tag. You need
the right to warn off intruders,
to consider
my house your own
and me your person
and yourself
my own dog.

by Denise Levertov

Comments (9)

The poet's grief has a personality.Levertov definitely captures the transience and individuality of grief and turns it into a company.
I really love how she gave her grief a personality, how she showed us that THIS grief was hers and nobody else's
No doubt grief is the dependable companion of human beings that is a neighbor next door. Heartiest Congrats on the modern POD.
The poetry of Denise Levertov is a poetry of suffering in equilibrium while wanting 'to show that violence has become an everyday occurrence.' She personifies this grief in order to prove that we can coexist with it. She's not passive, but she has an original method to fight for life through grief and this is so beautifully expressed through her poetry.
How would one recognize and entertain joy, if one doesn't know what grief is. Grief being part of life has to be cared and managed like an obedient dog in one's own den. An Excellent metaphoric expression. Thanks for sharing the thought provoking poem. X
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