Today was my 42nd wedding anniversary, my 3rd without my Rod. I tried to make it a day of celebration but sorrow had its way with me.


I lunched alone
In a restaurant that was not “ours”
Because “ours” would have been
Too painful to contemplate.
As I celebrated our love
And our life together
Your absence was a thirst
That today
I tried to quench with alcohol
Cosmopolitan to begin
Followed by 3 bloody mary oysters
Soused in vodka
Then white wine from Western Australia
And finally Butterscotch Schnapps with coffee
The food looked delicious
But my tastebuds were deadened
By grief
Sobriety stayed
No amount of alcohol
Could ease the missing of you
On this our 42nd wedding anniversary.
Lunch is over
I am left with a headache
Nauseous at the thought of alcohol
Knowing there is no answer for absence
Tricia 7/2/2012

About triciabertram

I have written all my life. Writing helps me to make sense of a world I often don’t understand. Poetry is my supreme solace, closely followed by literature and music. When my son ended his life in 1999 I embarked on the most difficult journey of my life, my grief journey. To survive in this unknown, harsh landscape I had to write. It was for me, the only way I could even begin to move forward. Then in 2009 my darling husband died suddenly and so my journey continues. I write about other issues but because of my life experience, grief and death are continuing themes in my writing life. In our culture I believe there is a fear of death, an inability to accept the inevitability of our mortality, and this creates enormous difficulties for the bereaved and those around them. I have begun this blog in the hope I will create a small ripple in the pond of fear that is currently drowning the reality of death and grief. I will continue to skim the stones of my truth, watch them bounce, and see how many ripples I can make.

Posted on February 7, 2012, in Poems. Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Difficult days. It seems highly inappropriate to wish you happy anniversary, having read the poem, but I do wish you all the happiness you can get, on this and every day.

    • Dear Jo, thank you for your good wishes, they are not in the least inappropriate. Today was a tough one but tomorrow will be better. I just felt a need to tell it like it was. Thanks for “listening”.

  2. Tricia there is no yardstick that you can measure ‘coping’ with and who is to say what is and what isn’t coping…you went out, you have eaten and you have written…I think you have done well and your Rod is lovingly proud of you x

  3. Ah Tricia, alcohol is never our friend!!

    But give yourself some credit – As Jane says – you have been out, you have eaten and you have written.

    If my day included those things I would consider it a good day!!!

    Take care of yourself my friend


    • David thank you for your caring words. With this grief business one never knows when a wave will come leaving you spluttering and floundering in its wake, but today is a better day and that is good.

  4. Oh dear Tricia. I am so humbled to be aquatinted with you through such deeply personal sharing. I think I’m learning something vital from what you share about grief. If we live long we all have junctures when loss is a powerful force, and the honesty with which you share is quite moving. This poem is a beautiful testament to how much you loved, still love, and miss your husband. I’m sending you love from the other side of the world. Truly. Debra

    • Dear Debra, your words make me wish I was still physically able to travel. We could chat over lunch at the Pig and Whistle then wander along the walk of fame and you could show me your city through your eyes.
      Rod and I always stayed at Rodondo Beach (not sure if I spelt that correctly) when we were in LA. Next time you’re down that way take a photo for me.
      A couple of times we drove from ‘Frisco to LA along the beautiful Pacific Coast Highway, I must try to see if I can post a couple of the photos on my blog.
      Bye for now

  5. Tricia,

    This a very powerful, moving poem which has come straight from the depth of you and I love it.

    I really like the way you bring the realisation into it of the uselessness of the alcohol.

    You did so well to make the effort to go and eat, especially alone (but maybe that was the way you needed it to be) and I wholly understand why you couldn’t go to “our” restaurant.
    You are very brave and I am feeling for you just now.


    Christine xx

    • Dear Christine,
      You are right on both counts, it was my choice to be alone. Anniversaries were something we always celebrated just us two and it felt wrong to have someone else there. And there was no solace to be found in the bottom of a bottle.

      Your empathy means a lot. Grief comes in waves and i’m in the midst of of another stormy sea, but I have ridden these waves before. I’m just really weary at present.

      Hope you are recovering from your fall

  6. I think I can understand your weariness a little but a little is enough for you to know thst I am thinking about you.

    I am recovering from the fall thank you but it is taking time.

    Love and hugs

    Christine xx

  7. I can never pretend to know how you feel or what you go through everyday…though your words come alive with utmost honesty.

    As you know, Lisa and I celebrated our anniversary that same day. Over dinner, I mentioned you to my wife and the little I knew about you from your blog posts. It did not dampen our spirits – and in fact propelled us to relish our time together. I am sorry if this comes across as somehow wrong…I mean to thank you for helping us to better appreciate and treasure what Lisa and I have.

    Peace and luv, Eric

  8. My condolences on your loss – even after 3 years, I’m sure those anniversaries are always painful!

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