What People Give You

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Long-faced irises. Mums.
Pink roses and white roses
and giant sunflowers,
and hundreds of daisies.

Fruit baskets with muscular pears,
and water crackers and tiny jams
and the steady march of casseroles.
And money,
people give money these days.

Cards, of course:
the Madonna, wise
and sad just for you,
Chinese cherry blossoms,
sunsets and moonscapes,
and dragonflies for transcendence.

People stand by your sink
and offer up their pain:
Did you know I lost a baby once,
or My eldest son was killed,
or My mother died two months ago.

People are good.

They file into your cartoon house until it bows at the seams;
they give you every

except your daughter back.

*Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno


  1. 2 1/2 years later...I still cry for you :(

  2. What a beautiful post. There is really nothing else to say, except I am so so sorry.

  3. Sending my love and my tears. I know you know that I truly do understand that statement. What I wouldn't do to have some wonderful someone walk through my front door with my Gabie in their arms returning him to me.

  4. ....just be sure to make your way back to HER Molly! That is my goal now... love my children that are HERE and make sure that we all make it back to HIM.... our precious little Stephen!

    Sending lots and lots of LOVE,

  5. I'm so sorry. We would get her back for you if we could, but since we come up short we give roses and even money. My gift never means 'get over it', but instead it means 'I'm sorry you have to wait so long to be reunited so let me do some silly thing that I hope gets you through it. I see how useless that is now! But it's better than nothing I hope. I don't know how you do it but I'm reduced to tears again over your pain. I can feel your love for her.

  6. yes,
    once again your loss is tugging at my heart strings.

    hugs to YOU Miss Molly (Vic too)!


  7. Jan, (and everyone)...

    Your gifts, your comments, your donations, they all mean so much. They truly do. It IS better than doing nothing. My bro-in-law was listening to NPR a few weeks ago and heard this poem. I thought it was profoundly powerful and I wanted to share it. It is no reflection on my gratitude towards the phenomenal people in my life who have done so much for me. It is more a description of my painful emotion at times.

    I am so grateful for all of you.

  8. What a sweet picture of Lucy and her cute daddy.

  9. And they would do that too if they could.

    Your poem is beautiful, and painful. Do you sometimes feel her near?

    I am so sorry.

  10. Beauty and pain mixed together bring tears of both kinds. Thinking of you. XO

  11. my heart aches for you, I am so so sorry.

  12. I did take it to mean you do accept what is given... but don't we all wish for more? Love you you and yours! I am wishing and praying for you still Molly!

  13. Beautiful poem, and pictures. I only wish you could get back beautiful Lucy. Someday seems so far away- but she will be yours again. My prayers are still with you and your family Molly.

  14. Wow... I love the poem. So beautiful and heart-wrenchingly sad. The picture with Vic is so poignant. I love you Molly. I do. I am thinking of you.

  15. Oh I wish i could...But thanks to our religion at least we know that someday you will have her back...oh what a joyous thing to look forward too!

  16. What a beautiful poem. That last line hits like a punch in the gut and then that beautiful photo of Lucy...I cried. I have been thinking about Lucy lately, even though I don't know your family and never met her. Every time I meet or read about another little girl named Lucy is seems somehow wrong, because she was THE Lucy.

  17. Molly, I heard this poem when they read it on "The Writer's Almanac" on NPR and thought of you immediately but kept forgetting to send it to you. I'm glad you found it, it touched me so much when I heard it.


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