Carrying the Weight-For Sandy Hook

by | Dec 18, 2012 | Poetry | 7 comments

The tonnage of this load
exceeds all legal limits;
the bridge cannot be crossed.
Its crushing weight
of granite grief
will split the spans and
send you spiraling down.

Unless (and
I am no engineer)
the load is
properly distributed
on this barren,
buckling asphalt,
heaving under
the pressures
of your shattered,
tear-stained hearts.

We will bear it
with you, even it out                                                                                                            on our shoulders,
containers in motion
transporting anguish
across state lines. Carry this
cargo of pain that’s sent you
careening across an endless 
four lane stretch, nearly out of fuel
bereft of even water, heading                                                                                    towards empty.

This load will not crush you                                                                                              but will be borne over                                                                                                   the coming days. And we will                                                                                         wait on the other side
heads atilt, marking your
arrival as you cross,
waving a sign Rest Stop Ahead.

And we will help you rest. 

“…whatever portion of sadness that we can share with you  to ease this heavy load, we will gladly bear it.” –President Barack Obama, Dec. 15, 2012,
from speech at Newtown Memorial for the children
who died at Sandy Hook Elementary


  1. Thanks, Karin….and how? I've thought about that (as I am a country width away from Connecticut). One way is it's made me more aware of just listening to people tell their stories of tragedy. Somewhere in the text of the Presiden'ts words he said that–honoring people by lessening the load by listening. And we all have a story to tell of tragedy and calamity of one kind or another. Hope you are well.

  2. Beautiful poem. I thought Obama's words very beautiful too- the problem is how do we help them bear it. That, I do not know. Your piece is lovely though. k

  3. I found this a strong poem, very well written, and just right on such a difficult subject. I couldn't start to write about it myself.

  4. This was powerful and (thankfully) optimistic. It's a real talent to find the light among the gray, and your poem is a real joy to read. God bless you and Happy Christmas. – Mosk

  5. wow evocative piece…i think many feel that crushing this week…the weight evenly distributed…great wisdom in that…we can not carry it alone….


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