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Poem: Peace

Peace is underrated.


There is a reason why we hope that the dead “Rest in Peace”


Not “Rest in Love”


Not “Rest in Hope”


Peace.


It is our last wish for those we love.

Odd that it is not our first ongoing wish for the living.

“What do you wish for your children?”

“Happiness” “Success” “Love” maybe “Health”


Today, I wished my daughter peace.

Peace from the doubts that nag at her like a hungry cat.

Peace from the feelings of inadequacy that seem to interject their venom, even in her most capable moments.

Peace from the fear. Fear that she will never be enough. That life will never have enough


Peace.


Today, I wished my son peace.

Peace to know that he has choices, in a world so full of them, it dizzies.

Peace to know that the scars others have left on him, don’t have to define him.

Peace enough to put down the bottle that robs him of the ability to feel


Peace.


Today, I wished my mother peace.

Peace that has eluded her for all of her years.

Peace that she will now never find, living inside a brain that is peeling away layers of light: her family, her memories, herself.

Lost in its confusion, its loneliness, its cruelty.

Each day, farther and farther from it, until she gets to rest in


Peace.


© Jennifer Deshaies

February 19, 2023

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