Grief – Ken Meisel

Is a pinch on your index finger

that tears your heart
right through it,

like all your memories
are torn on a blue silken sheet

and pulled through the eye
of a finger point needle,

and, even though you don’t
want to feel it,

this tearing of yourself
open, this grief,

this cascade of hot anguish
brokered by mourning,

and by the eternal loss of someone
you’ve loved

and held deeply to your chest,

and even one you’ve attached yourself to –
as if in an eternal embrace

so as to never
let go –

you are still moved by the rising familiar face
of someone kissing someone else

in an afternoon’s startled
dream,

because your heart asks for it,
this awful necessity,

this tearing of yourself,
open, for love.


Ken MeiselKen Meisel is a poet and psychotherapist from the Detroit area. He is a 2012 Kresge Arts Literary Fellow, Pushcart Prize nominee, Swan Duckling chapbook contest winner, winner of the Liakoura Prize and the author of six poetry collections: The Drunken Sweetheart at My Door (FutureCycle Press: 2015), Scrap Metal Mantra Poems (Main Street Rag: 2013), Beautiful Rust (Bottom Dog Press: 2009), Just Listening (Pure Heart Press: 2007), Before Exiting (Pure Heart Press: 2006) and Sometimes the Wind (March Street Press: 2002). His work appears in over 80 publications.