“Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the o-er wrought heart and bids it break.”

william shakespeare

For our All Soul’s Mindful Poetry session, we followed Shakespeare’s advice and listened to the poets who have put loss into words of remembrance. Natalie Diaz who remembers a brother lost to addiction and darkness; Ada Limón who remembers a free-wheeling childhood lost to aging; Robert Hayden who recalls with regret his lost father’s acts of sacrifice; Eavan Boland who remembers her lost Ireland and the generations of immigrants who left their homelands. To tell the stories, to say the names, to find the words. In so doing, we honor those who have passed.

The poems: The Lost Land by Eaven Boland, It was the Animals by Natalie Diaz, Before by Ada Limón, Those Winter Sundays by Robert Hayden, and Talking to Grief by Denise Levertov.

You may enjoy a bit of contemplative journaling or art-making to process your own remembrances.

More from featured poet, Natalie Diaz…

“Angels don’t come to the reservation.”

Mindful Poetry meets the fourth Tuesday of each month at 6pm PT, via Zoom.

Our Curator and Guide:

Poetry has been a life-long passion and solace for Rebecca Echert-Lennstrom. The beauty and playfulness of verse captured her heart early and became a well-spring of reflection and inspiration. For the last 25 years, she’s been sharing that love with high school students as an English teacher and creative writing instructor, steeped in words and imagery. She’s coached students in the National Poetry Out Loud Competition for ten years, paired with professional poets in the classroom to inspire student writing, and published high school creative writing magazines. This is her second year curating the Mindful Poetry Series as a ministry of the Episcopal Church.

Questions? Please email Sylvia Sepulveda at ssepulveda@ecww.org.

Learn more at our Mindful Poetry page.

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Mindful Poetry – Oct. Notes