Sku: P682CW

The Thing Is

Ellen Bass/Yolanda Tooley/ SCW©2011

The life-altering testimonials to Ellen's intense, hopeful poem are very moving:

Your poem, The Thing is, has literally kept my alive. I live in a very dysfunctional family. I get blamed and accused of such things I never do. I have big dreams and they're constantly ridiculed by my parents. No one believes in me and I feel like I live a very invisible life. I'm an only child, so I don't have a sibling with me 24/7 to speak to and let my emotions out. I had come to a point where ending my life would just be easier. Everyone hated me anyways. Then I came across your poem about how despite everything, you need to keep forgiving life, no matter how bad things are. I read this poem EVERY time I feel immensely depressed, and it just brings me back up to my feet. I keep your poem very close to my heart. Thank you for saving my life,

My beautiful talented funny generous wondrous daughter died setting off on her honeymoon in July 2009. Today I stumbled across 'The Thing Is' - during what is presently a particulary dark period. I cried openly and copiously: but in a Good Way. I simply wish to thank you for providing a chink, the glimmer of light - and of Hope - in the void of blackness. With kindest regards, -John

The Thing Is
to love life, to love it even
when you have no stomach for it
and everything you've held dear
crumbles like burnt paper in your hands,
your throat filled with the silt of it.
When grief sits with you, its tropical heat
thickening the air, heavy as water
more fit for gills than lungs;
when grief weights you like your own flesh
only more of it, an obesity of grief,
you think, How can a body withstand this?
Then you hold life like a face
between your palms, a plain face
no charming smile, no violet eyes,
and you say, yes, I will take you
I will love you, again.
­ Ellen Bass