Many of the poems are autobiographical: about first encounter, marriage, life and love together, and death. The actual physical occurrence of death can be readily described by physicians, but its emotional and life effect is much more illusory. Without question, these poems are simply one person's response to death and grief. They provide no decisive answers on how to respond to either, but if one's open and honest response can help others address such challenges, so be it.
The goal of the author is not to provide steps for the grieving, rather through poetry to share the thoughts of the heart and mind as they grapple with death and grief. He avers that through the very difficult process of grieving, which may never completely end, love alone is the key to healing and renewal.
""In these piercingly honest poems occasioned by the death of his beloved wife, Sarah, S T Kimbrough, Jr., gives unguarded voice to his grief. This is not easy reading because these poems force us to face not only the death of those we love but our deaths. These are searing poems, but in a strange way they are beautiful.""
--Stanley Hauerwas, Professor of Theology and Ethics, Divinity School, Durham, North Carolina
""In these 33 poems by S T Kimbrough, Jr., I found a depth of love, grief, passion, and power that poetry alone can convey. My heart was melted and my resolve to live fully and die well was strengthened. The journey of life and death--grief and loss--is artfully presented. This little volume will bless and benefit many.""
--Thomas R. Albin, Director of Spiritual Formation and Congregational Life, The Upper Room Ministries, Nashville, Tennessee
""Kimbrough writes of the reality of the death of his wife in poems that express grief with emotion, tears, and faith. His acknowledgement of the enduring love of God and of his own love for his wife is based on the grace given by God in times of hurt, grief and loss. His poems also tell of the fact that even within 'grief there is hope,' comfort and assurance of God's presence.""
--Joyce D. Sohl, Laywomen-in-Residence, Scarritt Bennett Center, Nashville, Tennessee
""I am moved by Kimbrough's ability to translate the many feelings that go with death and loss into words that he is now sharing with others. I am sure these poems will be a comfort to those who read them. They also model for others the power of writing to access inner strength and wisdom during a time of grieving.""
--Peggy J. Kinney, Hospice Bereavement Counselor, Duke Hospice Bereavement Services, Duke Home Care and Hospice
S T Kimbrough, Jr., holds a PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary and is currently a research fellow of the Center for Studies in the Wesleyan Tradition at Duke Divinity School, Durham, North Carolina. He is author of the following books by Wipf and Stock: The Lyrical Theology of Charles Wesley, Radical Grace: Justice for the Poor and Marginalized, Partakers of the Life Divine: Participation in the Divine Nature in the Writings of Charles Wesley, and has published poetry in the journal Theology Today.
|Publisher:||Wipf & Stock Publishers|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.12(d)|
About the Author
Table of Contents
Foreword: J. Richard Watson ix
Preface: The Story Behind the Poems xiii
As If It Were Yesterday xvi
Prologue: God, Whose Love Revives the Soul xviii
Section 1 Death and Dying
1 The Power of Death? 3
2 Death and Life 4
3 The Anguish of Death 5
4 Death Absent and Near 6
5 Where Is the Long-Awaited Calm? 8
6 Death's Holy Grail 9
7 Till Death Us Do Part 10
8 Grace-Filled Death 11
9 Embrace the Dying 12
Section 2 Grief and Grieving
10 Grief Is but a Breath Away 16
11 Grief 17
12 Grief's Redemption 18
13 When Grief's Dark Shadows Fill the Heart 19
14 More Grief? 20
15 Grief and Questions 21
16 The Answer to Grief 22
17 Sleeplessness, Grief's Torturous Friend 24
18 A Prayer for the Grieving 26
19 Grief Is Ever on My Mind 28
20 Secret Grief 29
21 The Risk of Grief 30
22 The Power of Grief? 31
23 Make not of Grief an Idol 32
24 Grief Comes and Goes 33
25 Misdirected Grief 34
26 The Brighter Side of Grief 36
Section 3 Love and Loving
27 Love and Grief 38
28 The Medicine of Love 39
29 Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder 40
30 Constancy 41
31 Stronger Than Death 42
32 The Eternal Art 43
33 To Live Again 44
Epilogue: God, Whose Love Revives the Soul 45