Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep by Mary Elizabeth Frye
Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.
This poem resonates with me because I believe that spirit lives on. In my book, You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide for Grief, Healing, and Hope, I write about how love lives on in our hearts. Here is an excerpt:
Life, loss, energy, expansion, everything is on a continuum of transformation. This is a law of science, of physics. The law of conservation states energy continues always. It can’t be created or destroyed, it just transforms from one form to another. Our connection with everyone and everything that ever was and will be is always present. In this dimension we feel the dark nights of the soul. We feel loss and we grieve. This is our human experience. I still grieve Jim’s loss and always will. Yet beyond the grieving is healing and hope and the knowledge we are always connected.
I know Jim still lives on in spirit and in me. Since his soul flew out the window in the early morning light, he’s been with me always in my heart. Being seen by him, his nurturance, his love, his humor, lit a spark in the part of me afraid to love yet yearning for it. He taught me to trust in love, trust in him, and trust in myself. I am deeply grateful for the time we had together—it is the biggest gift of my life.
Loving him, losing him, grieving him—the entire experience of us expands my heart and my life in so many ways. My heart is still expanding, allowing me to leave pieces of him and our love in the hearts of others. Leading me to hold my head up, open up my arms and my heart, embrace the world, embrace this life, this day, this hour, this moment, this.
My heart goes out to everyone in this difficult time. It’s important to feel connected – we are all in this together, and together we will get through it. Love will prevail. Never lose hope.
Sending prayers, love, and light.
Remember to be kind to yourself and to others.
From my heart to yours,
Debbie Augenthaler, LMHC, NCC, is an author and psychotherapist in private practice in New York City, where she specializes in trauma, grief and loss. Her award-winning book, You Are Not Alone: A Heartfelt Guide for Grief, Healing, and Hope combines her personal story of devastating loss with practical insights and simple suggestions for healing. Join her Facebook community, Grief to Gratitude, and follow her on Instagram.