Lack of Grief: A Thorn in the Flesh

It’s Good Friday here in Coronavirus Land. We might say on this “Holy Week” that the virus itself is our thorns, or the fear being distributed by the media is pricking and piercing us, for some it is the Federal Government that is sticking it to us.

For me, it is all of the above, but the thorn that is so troublesome and painful is the sore lack of going down into adult grief over the millions of different losses, difficulties endured, and the damage done to families and friends.

There is no demonstration of adult grief in the morning or nightly news about the crisis pandemic. The newscasters are telling us how many people now have the virus and how many have died or will die. They keep a straight face at best during their report on it, at worst, they smile a little and end with a “feel good” or “America Strong” piece that lasts less than 20 seconds.

From the very “Top Down” no models for mature grief, no dissent into the soul, and certainly no weeping. No Kaddish for the dying will ever be spoken on commercial TV, radio, or Internet.

If, as I believe, grieving is the doorway through which we step into our maturity and our humanity, this weekend, or hopefully, for the coming sad weeks ahead, let’s add some gravity to the Nation, not just short-sighted checks on toilet paper, but engage in the alchemical process of turning our heavy lead hearts towards all of those golden people who are suffering from all the losses, changes, short-changing, and fearful transitions.

“…Max grieves alive in an office on Lower Broadway, lone large mustache over midnight accountings, not sure. His life passes – as he sees – and what does he doubt now? Still dream of making money, hired nurse had children, found even your immortality…” Allen Ginsberg’s poem, Kaddish