Touch: The Journal of Healing


Editor’s Choice


Mourning Letter

    by Larina Warnock

Today I will breathe slow,

steady breaths of hope mixed

with a sorrow I can't shake.

Today I will make

myself smile at people and things

that don't bring me joy, but nonetheless

confess their care for my wellbeing.

Wellbeing: a word that means

little in the grand scheme of things.

Today I will remind

myself that life goes on, that every breath

accepted into my lungs is a symbol

of progress, that every "I'm okay"

muttered throughout the day might be true.

There is still life without you, Zack.

That is, perhaps, the source of my rage,

the cage that encapsulates and separates

me from who I once was.

Time didn't stop when you died,

doesn't stop when I find myself

unable to breathe, unable to see a future

full of good memories and dreams.

The world doesn't rip

at the seams even when it seems

I can't pull myself together, pull

myself up, do all the things

that other people normally would.

Time doesn't stop. But it should. It should.

© 2014  Larina Warnock

Larina Warnock is a mother, wife, teacher, and writer who believes strongly in the power of forward motion, advocacy, and reaching out. Her work has appeared in The Oregonian, Poet's Market, Space & Time Magazine, and others, as well as in Touch: The Journal of Healing. Her chapbook, Guitar Without Strings, is available from The Lives You Touch Publications. You can follow her at and

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Touch: The Journal of Healing

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