Poems about Grief and Death

I have the power to choose, 
So do they, 
So why do they Murder the innocent, 
Day after day. 
 
I have the power to choose, 
So do they, 
So why do they shoot the desperate children, 
Day after day. 
 
I have the power to choose, 
So do they, 
So why do they slaughter ruthlessly, 
Day after day. 
 
Blinded by their own arrogance, those beasts are hungry for land, 
Those hard-hearted merciless beasts, won’t stop until the they’ve stolen the land.

The thought of arms
and heat, the thrum
of blood and the sound
of a heartbeat that hadn’t
been drowned in drink
and laughter and a careless
footing on the way back
to the barracks was enough,
for that night at least.
He fell asleep straight after,
then an hour later began
a restless marching across
the mattress, hands drawn
up to his chest, cradling a rifle
he’d long since misplaced.

Had he been you, I’d have shaken
him awake, said I was bored,
said I needed him to sing
me back to sleep. But, by God,
I couldn’t bear him to speak.
In the dark, in the drink, I thought
one man in uniform was near
enough to you to trick my mind
into falling asleep. I was wrong.
There had always been more
to you than this, than a body
to turn to in the dark. If this
is all there is without you,
it is not enough

*WARNING – this poem contains content that may be inappropriate for young children*

Small anonymous jug,
toy violin the size of my thumb, unplayable, made of glass,
lamp-shade in the shape of a woman’s head, eyes blue, nose chipped,

picture of Marjory’s dad
a man I never liked
and never met,

porcelain duck, crock dog, bottle
dug up from some disused midden,
seven beer mats – one from each closed-down pub in a dying town,

A Rembrandt – no that’s a lie –
it’s a kangaroo print by Rolf Paedo Harris
worth nothing.

The things we bought to show
how successful
we were.

A million objects lined up on shelves
sourced and bought and stole
and received as gifts from people who have forgotten the giving of them.

Hiding places for spiders,
things if a burglar broke in
he would not pinch.

The impossible task of dusting them.
The weight of them.
No-one, not even me anymore, looks at them.

Given by children, now grown up and gone,
who don’t remember. The whole house
a mass, a tip, a population of unwanted crap.

I have chosen to bring in the house-clearance men
in their brown coats with a thousand boxes
and no nostalgia.

Let them take it all away, flog some, dump most, land-fill, scatter it like jetsam.
And let me sit quiet, alone, in a bare room with a hard chair
and a mug of sweet tea.

Content warning: This poem contains sensitive content related to assisted dying, and may be unsuitable for some readers.

A time to be born and
a time to die.
Ecclesiastes 3, verse 2.
We have no choice about the first, but
I would like to choose my time to die.

When life begins to pall,
I’d like to go at a time of my choosing.
Not to linger on in suffering,
losing all dignity,
and becoming a burden.

It is controversial, assisted dying,
but if I were to be allowed the choice,
it would make my later years
less worrying, knowing that when the time comes,
I can just let go.

If you have been affected by the issues discussed in this poem, here are the details of some organisations that you may wish to contact:

It was December when you left us.

It was December, and I was a million miles away.
Across the pond, where the sun was shining,
and each day brought fresh hope.

The knock at the door,
the firm banging of fist on glass,
brought darkness raining down.

Boarding the plane, my vision a blur,
to be swept up in the grief
and pinned down by the pain.

With swollen eyes; a heavy heart; and constricted lungs,
life dragged me through each day,
whispering empty promises
and playing a mixtape of memories.

It was December when the sun was snuffed out

but now I’m trying
to relight its flame.

Content warning: This poem contains sensitive content related to assisted dying, and may be unsuitable for some readers.

It’s my life
If I wish to die
I don’t want it yet
So I won’t even try

I want the choice
I don’t want to suffer
I want you to think
If it was your child, father or mother

I hear you shouting
Telling me what’s right
It is not your body!
It’s not your fight!

But it is God’s will
I can hear you utter
More like the devil’s will
Is what you really should mutter

If I was an animal
A dog, cat or horse
They would put me down
As a matter of course

Please listen to me now
While I have a voice
I don’t want to die
I only want…
A choice

If you have been affected by the issues discussed in this poem, here are the details of some organisations that you may wish to contact:

 

Blood skies,

4.5 million dead and more dying

Death surrounds us
Forces us into hiding in our homes
We watch, we wait

Sometimes you can think you’re in love
When you’re really just in pain ♥
We were in pain

“Please I can’t breathe”
No peace, only war
We need to change

We’re all going to die
Unless we help the planet

We’re killing it