The Other Side of Fear

I stand on the other side of fear

And I’m alive. He isn’t.


I feared this moment for years

As my father grew thin and distant.

I imagined it, but in all my scenarios

There was order, where in real life

There had been chaos.


The failure of imagination.


There’s a bruise inside my chest.

I feel it when I breathe.

Can’t cry it out. Can’t cry.

Black clothes.

My mother caressing my father’s gray hair.

Snow thick over the grave.

No amount of talking

About him, about her, about us,

Will make a difference now.


The failure of language.


There was only fear.

I spent the last month of my father’s life terrified

Of what was happening to him,

Of what was happening to my mother.

If my being terror-stricken had bought him

Time or health

The fear would’ve been worth it.


Now I stand on the other side of fear

And I have no words.

Except one. Cancer.


My father, Georgel Aramă, died on December 25, 2014. At the beginning of last year, he talked to me about something that had mattered a lot to him, his work. He talked and I took notes and I wrote his story and I called it A Time for Love.

4 thoughts on “The Other Side of Fear

  1. This was beautifully written, Roxanna
    I feel your grief. When I lost my father to lung cancer at 54 years old I was lost. PLEASE let me be there for you if you need someone who found the way back from grief.. . I’m here. Mindy

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