This Hard April

Anyone who’s lived even for a short time knows that life holds disappointments, corners filled with sorrow and loss. Conditioned by experience, many of us learn to hold our hopes in rein until the goal we seek is clearly in sight, appearing just about in our grasp. It is at these moments that we open ourselves to the mockery of Fate, who snatches our perceived victory in the instant we feel the race is won, the prize is ours.  We attempt to console ourselves with old bromides about “things happen for a reason” and “there are worse things in the world than…..” but experience trouble in being consoled by these words. I’ve had one of these moments recently, and while in the big scheme of things it is by no means the end of my world, I would be lying if I didn’t admit that it hurts, and I feel down as a result. Tomorrow is likely to be a brighter day, but for now, the following poem dealing with ultimate loss speaks to my feelings.




The sky crushes

blue this afternoon.

Loss jostles against the light

that filters gold and green

through new leaves

as I travel downhill.

Death feels wrong in such weather.


Cherry blossoms drift across the street –

spent petals linger

like a remnant, a memory

that tugs at the corners.


Grief holds, a stone in the gut,

or  a great hollow, as vast

as the heavy sea.

This early mourning is not mine,

but I know the taste of it.

I know the cold arms of that ocean.


The storm stays under my skin,

comes back in a rush.

I forget the way

to smell fresh-cut grass

without sadness, how to lean

into the road ahead. Instead, I feel

the many words for sorry,

and none of them enough.


Joannie Kervran Stangeland



This entry was posted in Poetry. Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to This Hard April

  1. sweeti's says:

    This morning  RAvi is burried  His star will light the sky this night…
    And i hope  for his wife   which he adored   that life will go on…There will be sad moments….
    and i know    Jorge…He was a smiling person…..Even gave his own food to the poor…that
    he would like  that his  relatives and friends    will smile   while thinking of him

  2. Embrace says:

    Thanks for always taking the time to stop by. Nice blog and vey well said.

  3. PJ says:

    Good Afternoon Jorge,
    You said it all so beautifully, as always. I was pleased to see that you had stopped by and said hello. Also that you liked the music that was playing. Thank you kindly. When you get a free moment, stop back by and listen to an original composition ( not yet published. )  It is beautiful, as well.
    As the words from the poem…
    I feel
    the many words for sorry,
    and none of them enough.
    Until next time…Keep Smiling, my friend.

  4. Stephen Craig says:

    Jorge,  " This Hard April " Reminds me of times of sorrow in the void where nothing touches the depth of dispair where one seems so alone while experiencing the magnitude of an event.  I have lost everything more times than I choose to count, and many that I love.   That moment, is rather like a state of shock as the sences seem frozen and the light becomes a stark white, yet the mind races and catches up with the being.  Whatever your event was, you have my thoughts and I hope the hurt passes soon.
    As ever be well,  Stephen Craig Rowe

  5. Gelert says:

    Jorge. Sorry to hear it.  Do you know this short little poem by Larkin?
    If grief could burn out Like a sunken coalThe heart would rest quietThe unrent soul Be as still as a veilBut I have watched all nightThe fire grow silentThe grey ash softAnd I stir the stubborn flintThe flames have leftAnd the bereft Heart lies impotentI hope tomorrow is brighter for you. You always lighten things for others, at least for me.

  6. Gelert says:

    the last verse of that was wrong, here it is again:
    If grief could burn out Like a sunken coalThe heart would rest quietThe unrent soul Be as still as a veilBut I have watched all nightThe fire grow silentThe grey ash softAnd I stir the stubborn flintThe flames have left,
    And grief stirs, and the deft
    Heart lies impotent.
    that\’s better. Sorry Larkin. Wipe the other one Jorge, if you would.
    Be thinking of you Jorge.

  7. Jungle Mama says:

    I am sorry to hear of this moment in your life.  I hope a new day will dawn on you soon and you\’ll feel a renewal of spirit and regain the freedom to seek a new adventure.

  8. Coffee With Kate says:

    Hello Jorge; in reading your page I am aware that you have sadness to deal with. No one can take that journey for you. But I send you a warm, gentle hug and wish for you to be happier today, and the next…………….
    Thanks for visiting, thanks for your kind comments. I so enjoy meeting new people; so please do come back often.

  9. Lakota Clay says:

    Yes, that about says it all.  Thanks, Jorge.  LG

  10. Michelle says:

    So true and well said.
    Here is a poem I wrote when feeling the same way:

    Pool of Sorrow
    Thoughts drifting low
    Feelings deeply hidden
    Usually not shown
    Wanting to shake this mood
    To get rid of this foreboding gloom
    That torments my heart
    Tears come in spurts
    I wipe them away
    I have to be strong
    I cannot stay this way
    I have to release
    Break away
    The hurt, the painful twinges
    Tonight they are abundant
    It is the worst punishment
    To dive into the pool of sorrow

    ((big hug))
    I hope you feel renewed soon sweety. You are in my thoughts.

  11. Deirdre says:

    I can certainly relate.  Thanks for sharing and I hope and pray for happier days to come.

  12. Holy says:

    Hi Jorge:
    Just checking in with you.  Sounds like you\’ve had some disappointment/sadness/grief even? – not sure but I\’m sorry to hear that.  Hope the storm moves from under your skin soon and that you find that happy, calm place well beneath that storm on the surface.
    Speaking of happy, I often think of your happiness quotient blog post and the lively debate you stirred…..
    Hugs to you, my friend.

  13. Marge says:

    Hello, Jorge,
    You are one of the nicest humans I have met and you have been very kindly to so many, including Margaret and me. It is very sad to know such a good human being as you must go through a difficult time. I hope life begins to smooth out and that it becomes happier for you. So does Margaret.
    I would like to say to you what you often tell others: be well.
    Your friend,

  14. Unknown says:

    Hi Jorge,
    I’m so sorry to hear about your sadness and the hurt you’re feeling now.  In my times of grief the things people said to me, although thoughtful and sincere, did little to alleviate my hurt.  But, I was grateful they were thinking about me. Sometimes it seems that things happen for no good reason, they just happen.  You are a kind, loving, and caring individual.  Please remember my thoughts and prayers are with you.  God bless you.  Danele

  15. Lisa says:

    Many Blessings on you, Jorge.  I do hope that the following days bring the relief you need.  I so appreciate the lines in the poem that read "The storm stays under my skin / comes back in a rush"; what an incredibly apt description of the reality of dealing with hard times.

  16. dawn says:

    These circumstances will change.
    This situation shall pass.

  17. Deborah says:

    I am so sorry to find you here suffering my friend, you always seem so stalwart.  I guess each of us experiences the rain and the shine, the loss and the glory of living.  Though I may not hold your hand in empathy, I hold you close in my little world and hope to hear you are happy once again very soon.  Until then Jorge, indulge.
    Blessed be,

  18. Michelle says:

    Hi Jorge,
    I just got in from work and was thinking about you so I thought I\’d drop in and say hi and check in on you. I hope you are feeling better.

  19. SANDRA says:

    Dearest Jorge…we are walking the "lonely walk" you and I…It is the walk of pain…the walk of suffering.  All I can do is reach across the barrier of miles and touch your heart and whisper…you are not alone on this lonely walk…at the end of the walk…the sunshine is waiting…the warmth that bathes your skin and heals your soul.  We, who love you wrap our arms around you and hold you during this time of suffering.  Love, Sandra

  20. Aafrica says:

    it\’s a beautiful poem. sad but beautiful. i\’m sorry to find you in a moment of pain. you\’ve always been there offering wisdom and laughters when i needed it. i wish i could do the same.i\’ve changed the setting of my blog to by-invitation only b/c of a small incidence. i\’d be very honored to have you on my reader\’s list. if you don\’t mind, please send me an email when you have the time. no rush. thanks.i wish the best for you.

  21. Marge says:

    Just stopping by to offer a little hug and a kiss on the cheek.
    Be patient, Jorge…embrace the pain of this time and learn whatever lessons
    are offered you, then you will be able to move on, stronger than you were before.
    Thinking of you.

  22. Charlotte says:

    I do hope that tomorrow will be a brighter day for you.  hugs, lottiemae

  23. Brian says:

    Except that a soul like yours has the gift of bright vision. I\’ve trusted in that since I\’ve known you.  I have to drive through the night again into uncertainty  tomorrow.  I trust in lights like yours when my own are in shadows.  Thank you for that.

  24. Unknown says:

    have u seen Maddy anywhere?

  25. Cheryl says:

    I am sorry to read of your loss…whatever it might be.  They say that everytim a doos slams shut behind you another one opens.  I don\’t know if that is really true or just an empty platitude like you have to keep swimming.  Sharks die if they stop swimming….  Sharks do die so I hope you can keep swimming along….

  26. Embrace says:

    This turly is deep and filled with a lot of feelings that I can understand. Waiting for a goal to be achived for example and it not happening is a loss to me . Your loss is deep and I have a need to express that you are in my thoughts and hope that you come out smiling on the other side. I know you will . You are a positive person I beleive.
    Take care and have a good weekend

  27. Gelert says:

    What is a father Jorge? And who defines what you should be and what you should know? In England, hunting deer is not on the list, in other parts perhaps other things are, that you have not mentioned. Society says \’be this\’, \’do that\’ in order to fulfill some strangely defined definition of what hangs (or does not) between your legs.
    I missed my father today too, and thought of others soon to miss theirs, or fathers without their families. All I ever wanted from mine was acceptance of who I am, and what I am, with no sense of not letting him down, or not measuring up. Sure as a child I was quick to see where he let me down, but quicker to see where I failed him.
    Just be what you are – and let your children be what they are. Let them remember you as somewhere that was \’love\’ . Love in the end, is all we have, even when our own failures mean we cannot give it as we wish.  Happy Father\’s Day Jorge.

  28. Rama says:

     I am really sorry to hear that u r going through some loss, and u r depressed, though i don\’t know the reason.
     Please take care, love Rama.

  29. Edith says:

    I usually cry to my mom or my aunt or my sister when I\’m feeling low or like I\’ve been wronged in some way… not that it changes my feelings much, but it\’s comforting to have someone just listen to me.  I\’m sorry that you\’ve been hurt… there\’s not much worse than thinking you\’re "home free", and then to have the rug pulled out from under your feet… I hope you feel better soon.  There\’s always tomorrow to look forward to.

  30. LORI says:

    This kind of thing is the "story of my life…" I hope that you have adjusted and recovered by now…?
    Sometimes the things we\’ve lost are just absolutely gut-wrenching sickening.

  31. Fenix says:

    Hello Jorge:
    Thanks for your comments, you wrote a lot during my holidays. I delayed a time in reading (and translating)it all

  32. Kimberly Me says:

    I\’m sorry to be so late in reading this and responding.  I know that you are enjoying your wonderful son\’s wedding as we speak, and that\’s awesome!  I just wanted to send you a cyberhug for the pain that you were in when you wrote this.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s