Words and Music for a Time of Grief

Dear Friends,

Our American society doesn’t “do” death very well. We separate death from our lives by putting those who are dying somewhere other than their home or ours. We euphemize it by using phrases and words that don’t really acknowledge what happened (“passed”, “passed on”, “transitioned”, “lost”, etc.). In the case of a tragedy, especially of someone with celebrity, fame or renown, we dramatize and sensationalize. This is a kind of social euphemizing.

Less than 24 hours ago, a great sports legend, Kobe Bryant, along with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others died in a helicopter crash. Kobe was an amazing athlete, and, since his retirement, focused on being a father, husband and creative entrepreneur. Like the rest of us, he was an imperfect human, trying to move through life, learn its lessons and improve his personhood. Sadly, that journey ended abruptly yesterday and it feels like there are few, if any, words available with which we can offer consolation to the grieving families or ourselves.

Here are some words and a melody that I hope can help…

I Miss You

© 2008, 2017 Neil Comess-Daniels

I miss you.
I don’t know where you are.
I miss you.
Perhaps you’re behind a star.
Or are you
Closer than the air I breathe?

I guess
dying is part of living,
Like in every ending
a beginning.
I guess
losing is part of having.
Like in every taking
there’s a giving.
I try to understand.
I cry
with my head
in my hands.
I try, still,
I don’t know why
Someone whom I loved
so much
had to die.

I miss you.
I don’t know where you are.
I miss you.
Perhaps you’re behind a star.
Or are you
Closer than the air I breathe?

You were
so very old.
You were
so very young.
You were
so very ill.
You lived
so very well.

They say,
“It’s a blessing.”
They say,
“It’s God’s willing.”
They say,
“It’s a tragedy.”
I don’t know
what all this means
to me.

You’re up;
You’re down,
In the clouds,
In the ground,
On the sand,
In the sea,
Far away,
And deep inside of me.

I don’t want to let you go,
But I can’t
hold you any more,
And this I know.
So…peace for you.
Peace for me.
Peace for all my friends
And all my family.

I miss you.
I don’t know where you are.
I miss you.
Perhaps you’re behind a star.
Or are you
Closer than the air I breathe?

 

 

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