10/15/21: for the bell that told me to rise By Melissa Ferrer (&)

10/15/21: for the bell that told me to rise

Grief is sometimes not the sea
not the muck and mire
not viscous and lubricating.
Sometimes grief is the anchor
the log, the rock, the mountain.

grief is a meaty hand
pressing upon the doors of your chest
not knocking to be let in,
just seeking attention,
and acknowledgement.

Sometimes it isn’t
seeking to be understood. Sometimes it is
a weight you carry that is not yours
and none of your business, but who are you
to just cast off something asking to be seen
even if it remains silent?

Grief drags itself through your front door
after a night of fever dreams,
a night of to sleep or not to sleep,
a night that you’ve slept well.
It comes with asking. How
embrace are you really? How
ready are you to catch what may come? How
forgiving can you be of this nature
who rages her way to your doorstep,
thrusts dust and leaves into your eyes–
a windy lament that knocks off your hat
and brings you to your knees?

Can you accept this, too? A stone
rolled before the opening of your cavern–
calling your heart a grave. Can you hold this dark–
this stagnant mystic? And believe
in Lazarus
in Elijah

in a mother’s faith
in jesus in the blossom
after a long winter
in morning’s first light
after an unlit night? Can you hear
the refrain of continual beginnings?

Even when no one is around
to remind you how it sounds?

By Melissa Ferrer (&)


Melissa Ferrer (&) (she/ they/ the artist formerly known as prince symbol) is a poet/writer, performer, musician, educator, motivational speaker, organizer and philarchist living in Kansas City, MO. They live in expansion and contraction. Their work can be found in Zin Daily, Fahmidan Journal, and Food for Thought Anthology– among other places. Their debut chapbook “Birthing Pains” was published by Turnsol Editions in 2020. And they are a Poetry MFA Candidate at Randolph College. Find out more about them at www.melissaferrerand.com.

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