“Every morning, I wake up and forget just for a second that it happened. But once my eyes open, it buries me like a landslide of sharp, sad rocks. Once my eyes open, I'm heavy, like there's to much gravity on my heart.”
― Sarah Ockler, Twenty Boy Summer

“You can not die of grief, though it feels as if you can. A heart does not actually break, though sometimes your chest aches as if it is breaking. Grief dims with time. It is the way of things. There comes a day when you smile again, and you feel like a traitor. How dare I feel happy. How dare I be glad in a world where my father is no more. And then you cry fresh tears, because you do not miss him as much as you once did, and giving up your grief is another kind of death.”
― Laurell K. Hamilton

“Envy, after all, comes from wanting something that isn't yours. But grief comes from losing something you've already had.”
― Jodi Picoult, Perfect Match

“In days that follow, I discover that anger is easier to handle than grief.”
― Emily Giffin, Heart of the Matter


“A lot of things are inherent in life -change, birth, death, aging, illness, accidents, calamities, and losses of all kinds- but these events don't have to be the cause of ongoing suffering. Yes, these events cause grief and sadness, but grief and sadness pass, like everything else, and are replaced with other experiences. The ego, however, clings to negative thoughts and feelings and, as a result, magnifies, intensifies, and sustains those emotions while the ego overlooks the subtle feelings of joy, gratitude, excitement, adventure, love, and peace that come from Essence. If we dwelt on these positive states as much as we generally dwell on our negative thoughts and painful emotions, our lives would be transformed.”
― Gina Lake, What about Now?: Reminders for Being in the Moment

“Three years? That's a thousand tomorrows, ma'am.”
― Karen Kingsbury


“He saw so many emotions mingled on her face: anger disappointment, fear – and defiance. Like her daughter, thought Fenoglio again. So uncompromising, so strong. Women were different, no doubt about it. Men broke so much more quickly. Grief didn’t break women. Instead it wore them down, it hollowed them out, very slowly.”
― Cornelia Funke, Inkdeath

“Love is an engraved invitation to grief.”
― Sunshine O'Donnell, Open Me

“It's funny, how one can look back on a sorrow one thought one might well die of at the time, and know that one had not yet reckoned the tenth part of true grief.”
― Jacqueline Carey, Kushiel's Dart

“The weird, weird thing about devastating loss is that life actually goes on. When you're faced with a tragedy, a loss so huge that you have no idea how you can live through it, somehow, the world keeps turning, the seconds keep ticking.”
― James Patterson, Angel

“...we are all sorry when loss comes for us. The test of our character comes not in how many tears we shed but in how we act after those tears have dried.”
― Michelle Moran, Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution

“All the times I have suddenly realized that my parents are dead, even now, it still surprises me, to exist in the world while that which made me has ceased to exist.”
― Nicole Krauss, The History of Love

“I play until my fingers are blue and stiff from the cold, and then I keep on playing. Until I'm lost in the music. Until I am the music--notes and chords, the melody and harmony. It hurts, but it's okay because when I'm the music, I'm not me. Not sad. Not afraid. Not desperate. Not guilty.”
― Jennifer Donnelly, Revolution

“Somewhere out in the darkness, a phoenix was singing in a way Harry had never heard before: a stricken lament of terrible beauty. And Harry felt, as he had felt about phoenix song before, that the music was inside him, not without: It was his own grief turned magically to song..”
― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

“Nothing that grieves us can be called little: by the eternal laws of proportion a child's loss of a doll and a king's loss of a crown are events of the same size.”
― Mark Twain

“Her absence is like the sky, spread over everything.”
― C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

“I was helpless in trying to return people's kindness, but also helpless to resist it. Kindness is a scarier force than cruelty, that's for sure. Cruelty isn't that hard to understand. I had no trouble comprehending why the phone company wanted to screw me over; they just wanted to steal some money, it was nothing personal. That's the way of the world. It made me mad, but it didn't make me feel stupid. If anything, it flattered my intelligence. Accepting all that kindness, though, made me feel stupid.  Human benevolence is totally unfair. We don't live in a kind or generous world, yet we are kind and generous. We know the universe is out to burn us, and it gets us all the way it got Renee, but we don't burn each other, not always. We are kind people in an unkind world, to paraphrase Wallace Stevens. How do you pretend you don't know about it, after you see it? How do you go back to acting like you don't need it? How do you even the score and walk off a free man? You can't. I found myself forced to let go of all sorts of independence I thought I had, independence I had spent years trying to cultivate. That world was all gone, and now I was a supplicant, dependent on the mercy of other people's psychic hearts.”
― Rob Sheffield, Love Is a Mix Tape

“What are heavy? sea-sand and sorrow.
What are brief? today and tomorrow.
What are frail? spring blossoms and youth.
What are deep? the ocean and truth.”
― Christina Rossetti

“It is foolish to tear one’s hair in grief, as though sorrow would be made less by baldness.”
― Marcus Tullius Cicero

“Grief is a curious thing, when it happens unexpectedly. It is a Band-aid being ripped away, taking the top layer off a family. And the underbelly of a household is never pretty, ours no exception.”
― Jodi Picoult, My Sister's Keeper

“How many times can a heart be shattered and still be pieced back together? How many times before the damage is irreparable?”
― Gwenn Wright, The Blue Stocking Girl

“As Luke knelt down beside his corpse, Clary couldn’t help but remember what he had said about having loved Valentine once, about having been his closest friend. Luke, she thought with a pang. Surely he couldn’t be sad — or even grieved?
But then again, perhaps everyone should have someone to grieve for them, and there was no one else to grieve for Valentine.”
― Cassandra Clare, City of Glass

“I know now that we never get over great losses; we absorb them, and they carve us into different, often kinder, creatures. ...We tell the story to get them back, to capture the traces of footfalls through the snow.”
― Gail Caldwell, Let's Take the Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship

“Here’s what I know: death abducts the dying, but grief steals from those left behind.”
― Katherine Owen, Seeing Julia

“History dressed up in the glow of love’s kiss turned grief into beauty.”
― Aberjhani, The River of Winged Dreams

“Everyone has always said I look like Bailey, but I don't.  I have grey eyes to her green, an oval face to her heart-shaped one, I'm shorter, scrawnier, paler, flatter, plainer, tamer.  All we shared is a madhouse of curls that I imprison in a ponytail while she lets hers rave like madness around her head.  I don't sing in my sleep or eat the petals off flowers or run into the rain instead of out of it.  I'm the unplugged-in one, the side-kick sister, tucked into a corner of her shadow.  Boys followed her everywhere;  they filled the booths at the restaurant where she waitressed, herded around her at the river.  One day, I saw a boy come up behind her and pull a strand of her long hair I understood this- I felt the same way.  In photographs of us together, she is always looking at the camera, and I am always looking at her.”
― Jandy Nelson, The Sky is Everywhere

“There is a time in life when you expect the world to be always full of new things. And then comes a day when you realize that is not how it will be at all. You see that life will become a thing made of holes. Absences. Losses. Things that were there and are no longer. And you realize, too, that you have to grow around and between the gaps, [...]”
― Helen Macdonald, H is for Hawk