This is for the 8th Anniversary of dVerse Poets Pub and also for a prompt by Brian Millers, one of the founders of this pub.  He asks us to write about a particular moment in our lives.  I have notbeen writing much lately as I have been gieving.  I hope this will get me to writing again.. Thank you Brian and thank you to all the poets through the years at dVerse.  May there be another 8 years!


“The first kiss is the deepest. The last breath is the hardest.” Nadège Richards, 5 Miles

I had been sitting by your bed
that grey sleeting Sunday.
watching as your breath grew more shallow.
At the last I pulled you into my arms
And held you while you drew your last breath.
I watched the light fade from your summer blue eyes.
I pulled you closer and wept.
I held you for 30 more minutes and
then I laid you gently back onto the pillow.
I walked up to the nurses’ station and said,
My husband has just died.

26 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. lillian
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:35:28

    Tears on my cheeks. Oh Toni. I can’t imagine.
    I think of you often when I host the pub….hoping to see you come in for a “drink” – I do miss your haibuns most especially. Know you are missed and loved by many.


    • kanzensakura
      Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:39:13

      Bless you Lillian for saying you can’t imagine. Too many people say, I can just imagine….it was hard stepping through the door again but now that I am here, I feel at home again.


  2. Grace
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:36:50

    This hits right in my heart. I feel for you dear Toni.


  3. waystationone
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:39:36

    Fudge. I hate to imagine the moment my wife passes. Its going to rip me up. I imagine that extra 30 minutes being when it feels hard to let go. Heavy emotion in your verse. I cant imagine it is ever easy letting go, but depending on the circumstances of the hospitalization its got to feel like a bit of mercy as well.



  4. Jay Bleu
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:47:54

    No words are good enough for a comment


  5. Jane Dougherty
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 15:54:30

    You said it all in a handful of words, so simply and calmly. It must have been the calm before the flood gates opened. Whatever has washed away, you’re left with the best memories even if you are changed utterly as Yeats might have said.


  6. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 16:18:27

    I could not imagine that moment… and I wonder what is worst to be left or to be the one leaving causing such pain.


  7. Machinist
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 16:32:51

    I am so sorry gentle one. Grief is such pain, with no comfort.


  8. sanaarizvi
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 16:44:21

    My deepest condolences, Toni. 😦


  9. Beverly Crawford
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 17:01:48

    So beautifully written, Toni, your words drawing for us the picture of losing what seems losing a part of ourselves. My husband was away on a fishing trip when he
    died, and I always felt there was so much unsaid. It is good you have the solace of
    those final moments together.


  10. Misky
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 17:37:26

    You are held in my heart and thoughts.


  11. Glenn A. Buttkus
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 18:10:17

    Heart-wrenching clarity, calm recall of emotional trauma. I think of you often, and hope our fellowship in the poetic community offers some succor and support–and of course some love.


  12. Frank J. Tassone
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 18:49:49

    Every searing detail, so poignantly and heart-shatteringly evoked. My heart breaks with yours.


  13. Miriam E.
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 18:50:20

    Oh what a painful memory. These lines are so filled with love and grief, they brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing this moment with us.


  14. Lucy
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 18:53:48

    This is so sad and woven very delicately from the heart. I’m crying a bit here from your words. They strike deeply and evocatively of mourning and grief. It’s a pain that is very unimaginable. I’m so sorry for your loss. ❤️


  15. Christine Bolton
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 21:22:12

    This is quite the most moving thing I have ever read. I cannot even imagine how you found the strength go through something so awful let alone convey those emotions and pain in a poem. You are a remarkable person. Thank you for sharing it with us. ❤️


  16. Sherry Marr
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 22:14:23

    So lovingly and beautifully told. I was glad to see you posting. Yes, you will never be the same. Grief comes to live inside us when we loved that much.


  17. Ron.
    Jul 14, 2020 @ 22:53:14

    Hard to merely click “Like” for this one; far easier to sing the praise of the poet. I’m singing.


  18. kim881
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 04:50:08

    It’s so lovely to read your words again, Toni, and I’m so pleased you’ve returned to the pub. Your poem made me cry. Your grief is in every line. The grey sleeting Sunday reflects the sadness of the day and the quote sums it up beautifully.


  19. lovemorestudio
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 10:25:03

    How heartbreaking….and so tenderly captured. Thank you for sharing this most difficult moment with us, this all too human moment. Much Love, Jason


  20. Linda Lee Lyberg
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 12:04:28

    This goes to the center of my heart Toni. Grief is part of living, but it is so painful. Sending you love as always.


  21. rothpoetry
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 12:47:46

    This is a heavy moment in time for sure! So sorry for your loss. You really took us there.


  22. merrildsmith
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 13:16:40

    It’s difficult to know what to say. You take us to something that is hard to imagine, though I feel your grief. As hard as it is, I’m glad you got to be with your husband when he died. And I’m glad that you’re feeling you can start writing poetry again. You gave us a gift in his memory–the image of his “summer blue eyes.”


  23. Carrie V. H.
    Jul 15, 2020 @ 17:17:10

    This broke my heart Toni! I cannot even imagine the pain of going through that loss and witnessing it. I am glad you are writing again my friend. Your poetry is always beautiful! Take care and God bless you.


Thank you for reading! I try to reciprocate all comments. If you want me to visit a particular post, please direct me directly to that post.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: