November 27, 2021

What Does Grief Feel Like?

Matthew Keeley

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PoetryShe is Underneath Everything,

My mum died earlier this year and it has changed my life. Grief hasn’t been what I imagined. I thought grief was a solid block of time where you couldn’t function or stop crying every hour of the day. Instead, I’ve discovered that it is multi-faceted and changes minute by minute. I usually write prose – novels and short stories, mostly – and my process is slow and full of procrastination. Over the past few months, though, I’ve felt a natural urge to capture my grief and its iterations in the form of poems. I’ve spent time crafting and shaping them, but it has been the most fluent writing I’ve ever produced. After showing the first poem – Volcano – to various people, I was struck by how many of them related to various lines and sentiments, despite the fact that I was worried what I’d written was too specific to my own singular experience. Now I’m hoping that sharing the rest of the poems might be cathartic for anyone reading or listening and might help grief become less enigmatic.