top of page

To Love What Death Can Touch

Death and loss will, without doubt, transform us. Experiencing the death of a loved one transforms our families, and it transforms our lives completely, forever. While our subjective experiences can be vastly different, the natural process of grief is similar in its profound depth, its deeply personal nature, and the aspect that can be very accurately described as "holy".

Yehuda HaLevi (1075-1141) was a man from another time, but he wrote some very powerful words that continue to have power and meaning for many people. I came across a wonderful poem this week, and I thought I would share it. When I reflect on my own experiences and my personal experiences of loss or impending loss, I can find inspiration in the words.

I recognize that the journey of grief will never be completely over, but in travelling it I can find my way to better places in my mind, my life, and in my faith. I can eventually find a place of joy through which I can experience life of my loved ones differently and better. I know that if I can allow myself to experience grief completely and honestly, I will emerge on the other side with a sense of joy that I can continue to know the person, continue to "love what death has touched".

Enjoy the poem, and try finding similar sources of inspiration for you when you experience loss. It's about feeling the real feelings, not just "cheering up". These things will help you experience emotion and perspective in new ways. If you are having a tough time, I wish you luck and hope you will find a trusted person with whom you can share your unique experience.

Tis a fearful thing

to love what death can touch.

A fearful thing

to love, to hope, to dream, to be--

to be,

And oh, to lose.

A thing for fools, this,

And a holy thing,

a holy thing

to love.

For your life has lived in me,

your laugh once lifted me,

your word was gift to me.

To remember this brings painful joy.

Tis a human thing, love,

a holy thing, to love

what death has touched.


Brock Caffee, LCMFT is a Marriage and Family Therapist, licensed in California and Kansas. He has over a decade of practice experience. He has a private practice in Lawrence, KS. specializing in couples facing life transitions. At home he has three children, two dogs, and a very patient wife.


The views expressed in this blog are meant to help foster perspective, to entertain, and to be fun when possible. Any intent to regard the blog as counseling or therapy constitutes misuse. Advice offered in the blog should be considered only if consistent with your family values and with advice given by your own mental health professionals. Please seek consultation with a mental health professional in your area if you experience distress or feel you are in crisis. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page