The Hardest Part is Waking


One of my favorite writers, Kelly Chripczuk, has a new book of poems out called Between Heaven and Earth. What  I love most about Kelly’s writing shines through in these poems – her honesty, her awareness, and her determination to pull the sliver of good out of every situation. You can buy her book HERE. In the meantime, here is one of my favorite poems from the collection, “The Hardest Part”:

I slept but my heart was awake. Listen! My beloved is knocking. – Song of Solomon 5:2

. . . you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from sleep. – Romans 13:11

They come to our room in the night,
nose dripping blood or underwear damp.
“Can you help me with this?” they ask,
and we are stirred from the heavy
darkness of slumber.

I never want to wake in the night,
never want to throw back the warm covers,
to search for glasses blindly.
I dread the wet sheets
and sitting in the cold dark of the bathroom
pinching his nose until the red river stops.

But when he shivers, stripping the wet
in exchange for dry, or when he waits
oddly stoic for the clotting to begin,
I feel compassion rise.

By the time I tuck them
back in, I can say I love you and
mean it as I rub their short-cropped hair.

The hardest part is waking.

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Check out Kelly’s book HERE.