Both times.

I knew.

Don’t ask me how,

I just did.

The first time it hppened,

I was ten.

As per my mother’s six am call-time at work,

I was being dropped off at my grandparents’ house at five-thirty in the morning.

I walked in half-awake,

But still with tired enough eyes that i could go back to sleep for a few hours,

Until it was time to get ready for school.

Despite the early call, my grandma was always smiling and happy to tuck me back into bed,

But not this morning,

Immediately, I knew.

As soon as I walked in the door, I asked,

“What’s wrong? Are you okay?”

She held back tears.

“Great Grandpa passed away last night,” she said,

“But it’s okay. He was ready. Go back to sleep.”

That morning I lay in my bed with silent tears until I could fall back asleep,

Trying to listen to my mom and grandma’s conversation.

My ten-year-old self knew,

Even through a dark kitchen and groggy eyes.

The next time I knew,

I was twenty.

I was at work, as per usual.

But today, things just felt…off.

“It happened,” I thought to myself,”

“It happened, and they just aren’t telling me.”

I was working quietly when I heard hushed voices and an utterance,

“Tell her now.”


Now it had happened.

They really jsut looked at me.

I mean, they told me, but they didn’t need to.

Marianna was gone;

There would be no longer the witty poet, reacher, and advisor to talk to,

No one to ramble on for hours but still make you laugh.

But of course,

I knew this before they even told me.

It’s funny, isn’t it?

How death can cause such a strogn feeling?

How sometimes you just know these things?

Sometimes I wish I didn’t have to.

This won’t be the last time, I’m sure. This feeling will come again,

And though I know right away,

It will be hard to accept.

From the Writers’ Kitchen, 2018.