Grief is a Lion that Lies in Wait

Today marks one year since the suicide of my dear friend Judy. I love her and I miss her. I post this again, even though I am no longer in the angry stage of grief, as a way of remembering her and encouraging everyone else to remember her as well. Perhaps if you read this and you knew Judy, you can post a happy memory of her in the comments–or share a similar experience of your own. Thank you.

lion

Grief is a Lion that Lies in Wait

Grief, a lion sharpening his claws,
lies purring at my light-foot leaping mind
and memories that squeak and scamper by—
to pounce upon me when I dare to pause.
I hear him growl when I say your name.
I feel his tail lash when I have to speak
about the way you died: the shock, the shame.
When I see your smile, he bares his teeth.

Yet you were gentle, soft, and sweet:
a slender-boned gazelle, a tender mouse,
the nursemaid of the pride, the cubs’ retreat,
a strength for woes, a den made safe for doubts.

O Judy, little lioness of joy:
How could you turn from comfort to destroy?

—Sørina Higgins

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About Sørina Higgins

Sørina Higgins is a writer, English teacher, and Inklings scholar. Sørina serves as Chair of the Department of Language and Literature at Signum University and teaches English at King's College and Lehigh Carbon Community College. She has published two books of poetry, "The Significance of Swans" and "Caduceus."

3 thoughts on “Grief is a Lion that Lies in Wait

  1. Reblogged this on Sacred Scars and commented:
    Today is a year since my mentor killed herself. In honor of that I am reblogging this beautiful poem written by a friend. I’ll also share a happy memory of Judy.

    After one of our many talks, she asked me to teach her the basic swing dance so that she could dance with her daughter. We pushed aside the large coffee table and worked the triple step into my living room rug. She laughed. I love her laugh. It amazes me how it she could laugh with such conviction without losing her dignity.

    I miss her laugh.

  2. After one of our many talks, she asked me to teach her the basic swing dance so that she could dance with her daughter. We pushed aside the large coffee table and worked the triple step into my living room rug. She laughed. I love her laugh. It amazes me how it she could laugh with such conviction without losing her dignity. I miss her laugh.

  3. Thank you for this beautiful memory!

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