now go and be happy. (poems on grief and hope)

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now go and be happy. (poems on grief and hope)

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Created in collaboration with Horse & Buggy Press, this beautiful, lovingly designed 104-page book features covers printed on a hand-fed, hand-cranked letterpress at the H&B studio in Durham: 

now go and be happy.

POEMS ON GRIEF AND HOPE

BY CATHERINE J HOWARD

What is the point of this book of poems?

Hope.

The discovery of self through unrelenting difficulty. Of facing mortality as motivation. Of calming the fire. Of choosing to live. Of requesting love and support — and receiving it. Of finding legs in the mist. Of sprouting wings.

Forcing less and riding the waves more — the only option for survival in these big complex lives that we live. Such beauty in releasing into the tide. Perhaps that is why I have always loved "The Awakening" byKate Chopin. Perhaps the walking out into the waves is not desperation — it is a release into the uncontrollable rhythm of all that is.

In the still moments, I feel the remnants of what the tiny man with the singing bowl revealed to me in the middle of a crowded store. Looking in my eyes for just a few seconds, he asked if I needed healing. Without a word, my eyes welled up with tears. He gently took my hand. With a few rings of a bell, he dispelled the fog of all that I thought I understood about myself. 

He smiled at me. He kissed my forehead and said, 

 “Now go and be happy.” 

Is that not the best directive we could ever give someone?

Yes, it is hard.

No, you can’t control it.

But you exist.

 Now go and be happy.