Grief of Ghosts

 “The greatest griefs are those we cause ourselves.”  Sophocles (496 B.C. – 406 B.C.)

In the quiet of the graveyard

In the quarter light of moon,

Fresh earth has yet to settle

And descend upon a tomb…

She slips the bonds of earth,

In search for one she missed,

In search for her beloved

And free herself from this abyss;

And another soul does flitter

He wanders gently by,

He’s looking for his child

To whom he’ll sing a lullaby;

And brother was a soldier,

He carries still his gun,

He’s looking for the enemy

But here he finds there’s none;

And the ghostly form of girl,

Wrists still crimson from her wounds,

Who in life did dream of death

But now the darkness will impugn;

And further in the graveyard

Under trees of pine and oak,

Other souls do gather

And wear night as their dark cloak;

They whisper to each other

And the air will catch their grief,

The living hear their cries

As moans and wails in

night’s soft breeze—

They’re looking for their loved ones

They’re looking for their lives

The ones that they believed in

And those they’ve left behind;

And in the quiet of the graveyard

In the quarter light of moon,

They sing a song of sorrow

Of lives gone much too soon.

COPYRIGHT 2012 © ELIZABETH MICHAUD JOHN.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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8 thoughts on “Grief of Ghosts

    1. Thank you for taking the time to comment. It is haunting, isn’t it? Clearly, no one is sure what is waiting for us on the other side, but I wonder if we wouldn’t be shocked ourselves, perhaps a little desperate…it’s what moved me to write this poem. I guess one day I’ll have my answer, although I hope not anytime soon!

    1. Oh, I know! I meant it to be a little dark but filled with sorrow. We always think of our own grief at our loss, but what about the lost soul itself? I wonder if there isn’t a sense of despair as they go on to the next phase…whatever and wherever that is…

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. It’s appreciated.

  1. Just when I spent the labor day week-end mourning the passing of my beloved friend Darrell Mills here come the poem that is filled with thoughts of those loves ones gone but not forgotten ..
    I am investing in a church project by buying a 4×10 brick that reads “In loving memory of Dr. Carl J. Mihcaud” 1937-1989

  2. Wonderful read.. There is something about the dead that is not as frightening as it is sad.. Wonderful finale to the poem, loved the choice of words. Simple, yet with a lot of force.

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and leave a comment. You caught on to breadth of emotion I was trying to convey. I feel like sometimes we get so caught up in the grief of the living, we forget that perhaps they dead also grieve…

      Thx again!

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