The Dying See

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The dying see
what the rest of us don’t,
will speak to these phantoms—
often people long gone—
in a manner so earnest
we begin to doubt
our own senses.
Is heaven real, has a corner lifted?
Or do the minds of our loved ones,
unmoored from the task of living,
fall back to the beginning:
a state of infinite odds,
where fact and fiction
have no meaning,
and whatever we imagine
is waiting to meet us?

Published by

Jean Ryan

Jean Ryan, a native Vermonter, lives in Lillian, Alabama. Her stories and essays have appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies. She has also published a novel, LOST SISTER. Her short story collections, SURVIVAL SKILLS and LOVERS AND LONERS, are available online. STRANGE COMPANY, a collection of short nature essays, is available in paperback as well as digital and audio editions.

9 thoughts on “The Dying See

  1. Whatever we imagine is waiting to meet us is the most comforting idea of what I wish to believe Heaven will be. It’s like living dreams between awakenings — that’s how I feel about my life’s Love, Robert. Your beautiful poem will be shared far and wide Jean. Thank you! Wishing you & Cindy safe travels in the big move soon! Xoxoxo

    1. Thank you so much. I recently lost my mother, and I knew I had to write about this phenomenon of talking to the unseen as a way of trying to understand it.

      1. Oh I’m sorry to hear this- I hope she passed swiftly, and that you have a sense she was being welcomed elsewhere? That can be so comforting. But the pain of loss just needs to be attended to, and felt as much as possible; I hope you are well-supported in your sad times, love G

  2. This was a beautiful poem! And I do believe that there are things that exist that we can’t see, hear, or understand, but that those who are near death quite possibly can. That thought brings me comfort.
    And I’m so sorry about your mother!

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