Another sneak preview

Another poem that will appear in my memoir, Leaving the Hall Light On. Please look for its release by Lucky Press LLC on Mother’s Day.

Tonglen Practice

It’s the mothers and fathers I care about.

When my son died, I grieved for him
and all mothers and fathers
who ever lost a child.
I breathed in pain
and with each exhalation asked
that no parent
would have to feel
the pain of such a loss again.

But I can’t do it alone.
The mothers
and fathers
over all the world
must practice Tonglen with me.

We must take the pain into our bodies,
into our souls, into our hearts,
and cleanse it with our healing breath.
Then with our collective breathing out
give this world a chance
to be safe for all our children
all our sons and daughters.

Breathe in, breathe out
now, forever,


  1. This poem is amazing. So profound I found myself deep breathing at the end of it.

  2. Yes – I am trying got do this. It’s difficult but sometimes the calming of the self helps calm the World.

  3. Moving words. Beautifully expressed.

  4. This is such a beautiful poem, Madeline. And now your book is so near to being a reality—we’re all so excited at this end of the process. It seems like only a brief time since we connected, and now your book is about to be printed. Thank you for teaching me more about breathing.

  5. Thank you all so much. You are all a true blessing to me.

  6. Incredible poem!

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