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Poem: Pulled

Updated: Sep 29, 2023

I wrote this poem within the year after Ronen died, before we put up his stone, sitting in the grass next to his kever (Hebrew for "burial site"). I have come back to it many times over, every time I visit and have to muster the courage to leave, and sometimes when I'm home, hundreds of miles away, wishing that it were easy to just go visit him.

If it resonates with you, please feel free to use and share with attribution. - HL



by Hinda Eisen Labovitz

I’m feeling pulled to the graveyard.

Like a magnet,

The closer I am, the stronger I feel it.

I yearn to be close to you,

To see you.

Even though,

I know,

Below the muddy blanket of earth

All that’s left of you

Is an empty shell.

Your soul is with God

Who only lent it to us,

But the cold part of you that is in the ground

Is the part that I created

With my body.

My faith tells me your soul was

Just on loan,

But my heart—

My heart?

You were my heart.

I smile outwardly so the world thinks I’m whole

While really,


I’m standing on the narrow edge of a void

Feeling the exhaling breeze from within

Calling me to take the plunge

Or just fall.

The hardest step

Is the first one I take

Away from this void

Back toward the world

Trying to avoid the whiplash

As I pull,

And pull—

And pull away

From the magnetic center

That threatens

To pull me down

To where you are.

My only hope of survival

Is the warm, outstretched hand

That locks around my wrist,

Pulling me away

From you.

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