Magic, Mourning


for H.H.
By Alyssa A. Lappen

Magic, she said it was magic when
his soul escaped the body, which soon
grew hard, cold. He was gone, “Like that.”
She expects him back, endlessly. “He’s not

here, but where did he go?” She asks.
As if I could answer. Nowhere, somewhere
she can’t see. She woke the kids to share
their father’s end. Sitting with him

Made it easier to know he’s gone.
“A life left,” she said, “the same
way a life is born.” A door closed
that once was opened. This mystery

puzzles me. How does she go on.
How did I. Not having felt the universe
shift the second my father left the world.
I haven’t heart to say how absence scabs

and bleeds again, no heart to say what
she already knows: His exit was magic,
but the door won’t close. She will stand
in the jamb calling “Where did he go? Why?”

This poem was first published in December 2000, in Vol. 1, Issue 5 of Kota Press.


All Articles, Poems & Commentaries Copyright © 1971-2017 Alyssa A. Lappen
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Alyssa A. Lappen is a U.S.-based investigative journalist. She is currently Managing Editor at the Leeb Group. A former Senior Fellow of the American Center for Democracy (2005-2008); she is also a former Senior Editor of Institutional Investor (1993-1999), Working Woman (1991-1993) and Corporate Finance (1991).

She served six of her 12 years at Forbes (1978-1990) as an Associate Editor. Ms. Lappen was also a staff reporter at The New Haven Register (1975-1977).

During a decade as a freelance, her work appeared in Big Peace, Pajamas Media, Front Page Magazine, American Thinker, Right Side News, Family Security Matters, the Washington Times and many other Internet and print journals. Ms. Lappen also contributed to the Terror Finance Blog, among others.

She supports the right of journalists worldwide to write without fear or restriction on politics, governments, international affairs, terrorism, terror financing and religious support for terrorism, among other subjects.

Ms. Lappen is also an accomplished poet. Her first full-length collection, The Minstrel’s Song, was published by Cross-Cultural Communications in April 2015. Her poems have been published in the 2nd 2007 edition of Blood to Remember: American Poets on the Holocaust and both 2007 issues of Wales‘ award-winning Seventh Quarry: Swansea Poetry Magazine.

Dozens of her poems have appeared in print and online literary journals and books. She won the 2000 annual Ruah: A Journal of Spiritual Poetry chapbook award and has received a Harvard Summer Poetry Prize and several honorable mentions.

Alyssa A. Lappen can be reached at alyssaalappen@alyssaalappen.org

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