What Will You Miss When You’re Gone?

December 21, 2018


Introduction by Ted Kooser: Do others of you think about what you'll miss when you leave this life? For me it will be the great skies over my part of the world. Heres Emily Grosholzs take on this, from her new book The Stars of Earth: New and Selected Poems, from Word Galaxy Press. She lives and teaches in Pennsylvania.

Here and There


What will I miss when I'm gone?
The squeak of the wheelbarrow's wheel,
Grace note that strikes with every slow
Revolution, and then the hushed, rusty
Answer in triplets from the invisible
Bird in the lackluster maples.

Branches, weeds, last autumn’s leavings
Raked from the moss-eaten pads, beds,
Borders, still untrimmed hedges.
Also the silent pale blue bells
Of my half dozen borage, ringed,
Self-seeded from the woods.

Daylilies my mother liked to set
Roadside in June. Pale Greek anemones
She never traveled far enough
To find wild, as I did once or twice, but
Maybe I'll bring her some, if over there
Windflowers blow beside a cloudy sea.

American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (www.poetryfoundation.org), publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. Poem copyright ©2017 by Emily Grosholz, “Here and There (from “June”), from The Stars of Earth: New and Selected Poems, (Word Galaxy Press, 2017). Poem reprinted by permission of Emily Grosholz and the publisher. Introduction copyright©2018 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction’s author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.



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4 comments

  1. Ah such a bittersweet poem Kathy. Makes one want to stop and be more in the moment. Hugs!

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    1. Debbie--Yes, and appreciate the little things we take for granted.

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  2. I could not write such beautiful poetry...Nora Ephron knew she was going to die, and she wrote a list of things she would miss. I was always touched by the movie she directed, Michael, where Michael talks about how he will miss life on this earth (he's an angel.) I will ponder this...Thank you.

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    Replies
    1. You're most welcome, Rita. I'm pondering it myself still.

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