Category: Grief

robins

These are two of my first haiku, published in PEGASUS in 1994.

A few petunias
snapdragons, gold and white mums
the robins are gone.

Holding in my heart
as days become cold and dark
robins will return.

Ellen Grace Olinger

Trumpet Vines and Time

how the
trumpet vines
grew on the wall
of my mother’s home
glorious
like her faith
her unconditional love
when God said
“It’s time…”

August 11, 2010

This poem was published
in Bell’s Letters 135, February 2011.

Ellen Grace Olinger

Poems For My Father

love for you
became her care
until she joined you there
grief gives way to fields and wind
and now I hear your voice again

(Published in Bell’s Letters.)

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rain in dark night
refreshes each leaf
today I think of you
no longer with grief

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I posted my Christmas poem for my father again in December 2017:

A Poem For You (1991).

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In loving memory, for Harold A. Borgh (1915 – 1983).  My father taught history at Wauwatosa East High School.

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Wait on the Lord: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the Lord.

Psalm 27: 14 (KJV)

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Lake Michigan
June 2018

Ellen Grace Olinger

Poems For My Mother

When Charlotte Digregorio thanked me for reblogging her post, she mentioned that she enjoyed this blog and my writing about my mother.

I wrote a lot about my mother in the early years of this blog.  Her passing was in 2004, and I had the privilege of helping with her care for years.

These are a few of the poems I wrote for my mother.

EASTER DINNER

The background is red
Her hair has become silver
And her dress is rust.
Her smile these days is pure gold
And her eyes sparkle anew.

(Easter Dinner was published first in Time Of Singing, 1993.  The poem goes back to a time when my mother was growing a new life, after my father’s passing.)

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God’s Grace

You went on
After more losses
Than I can name

With you as
Mother and model
I must do the same

You suffered and
I do not ask you
To bear more pain

You are eternally well
Still saying, “I love you”
Again and again

(Published in Bell’s Letters No. 109; and The Discerning Poet, Autumn 2004.)

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Taking turns
Letting each other go
Only to learn again
How love grows,
Mother

(Published in Bell’s Letters Poet No. 115, Jan. 2006.)

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another year
has passed since
my mother’s passing
I sit and quietly read
a book she would like too

for Enola M. Borgh
1917 – 2004

in loving memory and peace

My mother was a professor in the English Department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

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And a haiku and photo of flowers:

groceries for Mom
fresh flowers
always on the list

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Ellen Grace Olinger

Poem and Photo

IT IS IMPORTANT

To have a vision
to sustain the effort
to see it all the way
through – –

Even when it seems
to leave you

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This is a favorite old poem, and it has found many homes.

It was published first in Time Of Singing.

Ellen Grace Olinger

IMG_0477

Oostburg, Wisconsin
July 13, 2018
Photo by Karl

as birds quietly sing

losses in life
low setting sun
through branches of trees
now rises again
as birds quietly sing

(Sunset . . . Sunrise from Poems From Psalms And Nature, 2010).

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Psalm 1: 3 (KJV) :

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water,
that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;
his leaf also shall not wither;
and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

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patterns on my floor
moving with the breeze
sun from the West
highlights
branches of leaves

Time Of Singing
Volume 38, Number 1
Spring 2011

Ellen Grace Olinger