When did sadness stop covering everything?

I don’t know.

It must have first been for moments,

then maybe hours,

days eventually.

Then for a long time

no longer ever-present,

but just below the surface

waiting for a thought to trigger it.

Now, the ingredients of my life

are suffused with contentment and joy,

but even so,

sadness can surface


as the dark shape of loss

stirs the cauldron

and tears are added to the soup of life,

salty still,

but not as bitter

or overpowering,

adding an important flavor

to the whole of me.

From Catching the Light – Coming Back to Life after the Death of a Child by Genesse Bourdeau Gentry. www.afterthedeathofachild.com

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Genesse Gentry

Genesse Gentry is the author of two books of poetry, Stars in the Deepest Night - After the Death of a Child and Catching the Light – Coming Back to Life after the Death of a Child. She lives in northern California with her husband Bill. They are the parents of daughters Megan and Lori, who died in a car accident in 1991 at the age of 21. Following Lori’s death, Genesse and Bill joined the Marin County, California Chapter of The Compassionate Friends (TCF). Genesse has continued being involved in that organization ever since. She has been meeting group facilitator for both the Marin County and San Francisco meetings as well as chapter leader. She is currently on the steering committee of TCF Marin, as well as Regional Coordinator for Northern California. She presents writing workshops at national conferences of The Compassionate Friends as well as for northern California chapters. Genesse appeared on the radio show “Healing the Grieving Heart” with Dr. Gloria & Dr. Heidi Horsley to discuss “Compassionate Friends: Finding Hope Through Service.” To hear Genesse being interviewed on this show, click on the following link:

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