Grief as Heat Before Rain

Sometimes grief is a corn maze
I’m all bend and fury
mouth full of grit,
clutching husks in my hands.

Sometimes it’s the hull of a ship
holding everything the waves
would scatter.

I’m waiting for the rain
to cut through this heatwave
August holds a scythe to my throat—
I’m gripping at an unraveling clump
of chicken wire.

Can I feel everything now, all at once?
Can I grieve for what I never held,
just the same as what was lost?

Maybe grief is a familiar place,
like the farm fields I spent summers barreling through,
dirt on my knees,
cradling kittens against my chest
while coyotes crawled in
through the barn windows.