The death of a loved one can throw us into a surreal world that no one else seems to understand. The poems in Words for the Unbearable, written after the death of Enid Sanders’ one-year-old daughter and later her husband, take readers on a down-to-earth journey through the everyday realities of grieving, mirroring their experience so they know they’re not alone.

With humor, honesty and wisdom, Sanders takes us through the day-to-day of mourning. (“I’ve nailed how to grieve,” she assures her dead husband. “I just can’t figure out how to get you back.”)

The poems are grouped in sections that deal with different parts of the grief experience—the mental snapshots of the past, bad and good, flooding your mind; the sense that your loved one is still with you; the PTSD and shock that grief can make you this crazy; the moments of comfort and glimmers of hope. Having the book broken into sections allows readers to take in only the parts they can deal with at any given time. Throughout the book, Enid also shares some coping strategies that have helped her get through. 

“These are words for me; words for the unbearable.”

—from a grieving friend

The book’s title comes from a grieving friend who read the poems and said, “These are words for me; words for the unbearable.” Because it is poetry, the book reaches people at a deep level, stimulating thoughts and feelings that help them heal. It will help therapists, patients, hospice workers, clergy, and anyone who grieves.