"Girl Turned Grief" by Jaimee Boake


Jesulein komm macht mich fromme

five days after the funeral

roses rot on the counter

but to throw them out feels too final to bear

and grief rents a room in my heart,

sits with me at the dinner table

where everything tastes like chalk,

staring as I try to swallow my sadness,

instead of the other way round.

Das ich zu dir in himmel komm

I am girl turned teacup in shaky hands,

sloshing, spilling, delicate and difficult

to piece back together when I break and break,

an endless shattering,

try to glue myself together with a prayer I wish

I believed in as much as you

Mein hertz ich klein

I am girl turned paper cut,

that imperceptible, impossible ache,

that stinging slice

each day adding to the list of things I’ll miss:

three extra blankets just in case

a hug solid like a building’s foundation

a laugh I can’t recreate with words

so I search for your smile in the stars

Kan niemand heir rein

I am girl turned missing teeth,

faltering smile, gaping wound,

tongue slips

each time it tries to carry goodbye in that space

Als du mein liebes Jesulein

I am girl turned newspaper clippings,

cut apart

every attempt to remember

tucked in a wrought iron chest that you

would not wish to leave hollow


Jaimee Boake (she/her) is a high school English Language Arts, Creative Writing, and Leadership Teacher in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Treaty 6 Territory. She loves reading, writing, spending time with her dogs, and is happiest, always, in the mountains. A recipient of the Martin Godfrey Award for Young Writers, she is very fortunate to have her work published in various magazines and anthologies, including a few upcoming. You can read more on Instagram @jaimeeannethology.

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