misc, poetry

borrowed grief

borrowed grief
is
a strange weight,
a curious burden:
something that is not yours
and yet
you bear it anyway.
does it help those to whom it belongs?
perhaps not.
no,
it only brings you needless sorrow.
but this is a sorrow you have chosen.

this borrowed grief
is
a strange and discordant emotion,
a reminder of the reality of death.
it is not mine,
and yet
I have chosen to bear it
because I cannot but grieve this horror.
does it help those to whom this grief is a personal,
living,
raw
thing?
does it help those whose friend has died?
perhaps not.
and yet
I will weep with them.
I will take this needless sorrow
for it is a sorrow that I,
and all who hate brokenness and long for the mending,
must bear.

and this borrowed grief
becomes my own.

journey on, friend of my friends,
until we meet someday on God’s far shore.


Thomas McKenzie died in a car crash on August 23rd, along with his daughter (whom he was driving to college). Father McKenzie was an Anglican priest who was involved with the Rabbit Room, among other things, and a dear friend of many of my favorite authors and musicians. I didn’t know him personally, and so I will not try to tell you any more about him. I read tributes to him by A.S. Peterson, Andrew Peterson, and S.D. Smith (below), which are all very beautiful and made my grief greater.

Fare forward, Father McKenzie. I will grieve for you until we meet.

2 thoughts on “borrowed grief”

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