Falling Out of Time

by John Stoltenberg

There is so much sorrow in this show
Nine fine actors playing nine parents
All mourning dead children
Searching to see them again
Seeking to be with them one more time
Speaking words of unspeakable loss
Each groping their solitary way
Going in circles
Burdened by unbearable grief
Each child’s dying retold
Each child’s death relived
Mothers and fathers intoning
One by one
Poems of loss and sadness
Lyrical lines of lamentation
Becoming a chorus of bereavement
No longer alone
Finding solace in shared heartbreak
In freeing verse
In full disclosure of private pain
All their sadness aired
No more to be said
Able to breathe again
Still their children are dead
Gone from them
Yet they have found the words
To say what it is like
What it is
To lose the precious life of one’s child

So know this before you go:
It is all in verse
And it is all about sorrow
Soulful sorrow, all of it
A show made solely of sorrow
Yes, one note
A note you may know
But this singular maybe-familiar note has been scored like a magnificent symphony
And it is voiced by nine superb soloists
Who become an exquisite choir
That may lift you up
If you have already known the note

 

 

 

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