Just Rest

May you know, bone-deep, It’s going to be okay.

I shook in my kitchen this morning
As my son descended the stairs right after the news
Had reminded me there are people in the world
Who believe my life is more precious than his.


All I have are expletives.
This is the worst part.
We have to keep going
We have to keep fighting
Even though we can’t.
Even though it’s too much to ask of us.
Of you.

I’m so sorry for your loss.

I wish I had better words.
I only have hope. Unwavering hope that
The world is getting better
Not worse.

I know it’s not enough.

And maybe it’s false. Maybe it’s stupid
But it’s all I have, so I’ll cling to it.

You are a warrior.
Your son. Your daughter.
They did not die in vain.

As you wipe the tears and the blood
Off your brow and your forearm,
And scrub the pepper spray out
Of your eyes,
Trust. Somewhere, in some small way,
Your work made a difference.

May you know, bone-deep,
It’s going to be okay.

Even though it’s not okay now.

As your mind wanders to the soldiers
On the front lines of a war they did not sign up for,
May you find the strength to keep going
Even if it feels like there’s nowhere to go.

For now, unfasten your load and lie down on the cool grass.
I’ll make you some soup.
We’ll sit by the fire
And hold each other.
I’ll bandage your wounds
And tell you a story to make you forget
This nightmare, if only for a moment.

Tomorrow, we’ll set out for battle again.
I’ll fight with you and for you.
I’ll give my life if I have to.
But tonight, just rest, dear one.
Just rest.

This poem was originally published on