Joshua Sutherland Allen

Joshua Sutherland Allen

Saturday, April 4, 2015


A skeptic was I, upon a time,
Not so long ago,
Yet long enough that it became my tradition,
Entered my long-term memory and self-awareness.
No transcendence or immanence knew I,
But only that which was rational and sound.

A skepticism borne of grief –
The loss of career, and with it belief,
And later the horror of pleading silence
Where a beating heart had been.

A year ago I was in hell:
One life lost, two others closely following.
Three deaths in such short span
Defeated hope and dismantled cheer.
Easter day dinner was taken in shifts,
So one could always be with the dying one –
Life was swallowed up in dying and death.
I could not believe in joy beyond this mortal life.

Reason overcomes emotion, I firmly believe,
And I immersed myself in soothing logic,
Rejecting that which had no rational purpose.
I cast aside hate and love,
Spirituality and justice,
In favor of study and increased time at work.
Rationality became my god.

Now one year later I have emerged from hell,
Like Beowulf from the deep,
Or Lazarus from the tomb.
No monster have I fought,
And no savior called me forth:
Two young girls have restored my life,
And given me reason to love.


  1. This is absolutely remarkable!!
    Wishing you a very happy & prosperous Easter! :D

  2. The pain of loss...that hell from which we think we will never be rid of...finding our salvation in whatever way it presents itself to us...I had to read this again as the tears flowed for the lost and the found! Happy Easter...


  3. Joshua, it lifts my heart to see you posting again. I adore this beautiful poem, the journey you have traveled through grief. Nothing heals one's heart and restores one's faith like two little girls needing love and safety. They are very lucky to have somehow made their way to you. I know you must be enjoying the happiest of Easters this year. That makes me happy.

  4. a good drive to something or somewhere hopeful and lovely.

  5. Thank you for sharing this insight, Joshua. It's a privilege to read it.

  6. such sadness to overcome.. it takes time.

  7. That ending when you mentioned about finding "reasons to love", your story doesn't end there, but rather you are just about to start a new one that is bigger & better. We may face trials & testing times from time to time and may find your own battles heavier or tougher than others.. that's normal. It's not the amount of sufferings that we count here but the amount of faith you put every suffering you get & the times you never quit that will define the kind of person you are today & success that will await just for you. The host of golden daffodils is always a joy to watch. Thank you for the poem. Happy Easter to you & yours.

  8. I am so happy that you came out on the other side. You have gone through a lot during the past year. It sounds like you found a way of dealing with it all - through rationality. But then again, I think, that sometimes in the face of death there is nothing rational to be found. You have found the answer -- the love of two young girls. Truly there is nothing like children to restore one's soul and one's beliefs. Happy Easter to you and yours.

  9. I, too, have known skepticism borne of grief and you have described it compellingly.

  10. Now that you've risen Lazarus like from the tomb, past the pleading silence.. more power to you as you move forward. This was an insightful poem.

  11. to walk on the pathway of grief is a tough journey and at the end there's restoration of of faith in the self..and of course finding hope & joy in the existence of love...