The Poetry of Grief: The time to be slow

This poem I’m adding to my collection of the poetry of grief (read more here) isn’t about grief specifically, but it does speak to those difficult seasons we experience when we’re bereaved.

It brings a picture to mind – a long walk on a windy cold day, and the relief of being able to take shelter by a wall.

What walls protect you from the stormy blasts of your grief? Is there a friend or family member who comforts you? Is there something else that shields you? Whatever it is, I hope you can ‘lie low’ to the wall when it is that time, and hold onto hope that soon you’ll be in ‘fresh pastures of promise’.

This is the time to be slow

This is the time to be slow,
Lie low to the wall
Until the bitter weather passes.

Try, as best you can, not to let
The wire brush of doubt
Scrape from your heart
All sense of yourself
And your hesitant light.

If you remain generous,
Time will come good;
And you will find your feet
Again on fresh pastures of promise,
Where the air will be kind
And blushed with beginning.

John O’Donohue

Lie low to the wall until the bitter weather passes

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