Monday, December 19, 2016

"How to Measure Pain" by Irena Pasvinter

Songs of Eretz Poetry Review is pleased to present “How to Measure Pain” by Irena Pasvinter.  Pasvinter divides her time between software engineering, endless family duties, and writing poetry and fiction. Her stories and poems have appeared in online and print magazines, including:  Every Day Fiction, Bartleby Snopes, Bewildering Stories, Fiction 365 and many others. She is currently working on her never-ending first novel. Visit her at

How to Measure Pain
Irena Pasvinter

Tell me, how to measure pain --
by volume of tears,
frequency of groans,
decibels of cry?
Tell me how to measure the pain of
watching your loved ones suffer,
of watching them die.

So, you think you know
how to measure pain?
You've figured it out?
Good for you.
No, don't tell me. Oh, god.
If you can go about measuring pain,
It doesn't really hurt.

Poet's Notes:  I wish none of you could relate to the topics of human suffering and loss of loved ones, but unfortunately life is not a fairytale adapted for children. The first line came to me one day when I was walking through a hospital where my mother spent last months of her life in a cancer hospice. The rest of the poem followed suit, taking shape during the same walk.

Editor’s Note:  This is an interesting take on the sonnet form.  I enjoy the sprinkling of rhymes here.  The last two lines make for a strong finish--gave me chills. 

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