I was quite startled when this photo came into my inbox earlier this year. I hadn’t seen it before. It was from Megan Rose, my nephews’ step-sister who is
the child in the picture. Sadly her cousins Sinéad and Aoife are dead, hit and run and unintentional injury. Naming them and the causes does not ease the pain in any way. I have always been of the view that we are part of a very large coterie of parents
whose children die before them.
They die from accident, homicide, suicide, cancer and heart disease. There are populations of young people who die in famine, war-torn zones or refugees. But behind each individual
is a set of parents who are left with unspeakable grief and loss.
And so, 1st August is our Aoife reminder day, sixteen years gone this year.
I am always prompted
to write something for her at this time. Please read, share and send me feedback.
the time of year again and again
wouldnt you think that after all these years
it would get easier and less of a belt in the gut
but it doesn’t if anything the blow is harder
add a guilt attack for the periods of not remembering
sitting in the heat and high humidity
in a place that was largely of her getting
she directed pearse to show
us the location
we fell in love with it and came back to buy
so now sixteen and fourteen years on
we perch, swelter and are grateful
not grateful for her unintentional injuries
for the big hole and ache her absence leaves
grateful for having her as part of us for that time
grateful even for
the irritations and blowouts
grateful to see how she grew and blossomed
grateful to have loved her so dearly
30th July 2020
Beautiful Peter.Thank you
Thank you, Peter, for these tender words. Sending love.
A great gift to find/create beauty in the sadness of loss. Keep well Peter.
Thanks Peter. Honest as always, insightful as usual, a lovely remembrance. Thinking of you and Margot. Sixteen years and forever too soon.
Thanks Peter for this lovely poem. You can feel the heartache and loss even after all those years. My brother lost his son twenty years ago on 5th August. The Irish Times today carries an In Memoriam.
Beautiful words. Thinking of you, Margo and the family. Bless you
Thanks, Peter. On Aoife reminder day I hear/share the grief and loss which, while unspeakable, is tempered by gratefulness for having loved her so dearly. Moving pure thought especially in these times
Aoife was my biggest cousin. When we were very young we would lock ourselves in the bathroom of our grandparents when it came time to depart. Goodbye Aoife....
Heartbreaking and beautiful
Memories of playing in the woods, on the green, sports days, braiding Aoifes hair when I thought I wanted to be a hairdresser and getting the odd sweet from Mr. Gibney.
Another moving tribute to Aoife - lovely Peter. Can’t believe 16 years have passed since that beautiful creature graced this earth. Our thoughts are with you.
A great excuse to let my tears drop
Bawling. Thanks Peter.
25.11 | 22:15
Grief is experience through the mundane. Simple but powerful. The accompanying image really compliments the poem.
07.11 | 11:14
A great observation! Social media can be a scary place... I also need to reduce my time there
06.11 | 16:24
A great one, Peter, in the context you describe. I don't read social media myself, I doubt my equilibrium could stand it. 'The balance of his mind disturbed' yes, I think it would be.
06.11 | 15:59
Yes, gossip is a weapon of mass destruction.
In my business as well as personal life I have zero tolerance.