I told them to describe their feelings,
that I would listen.
I told them to make a list of adjectives:
angry, disappointed, overwhelmed, unsure.
I told them to decide for themselves what is
an appropriate response to losing.
I told them to use their voices to speak,
to stand for what they believe.
I told them to keep a few strategies on hand
to help them endure and heal.
I told them that I will be here to listen,
and then I went on mute.
I didn’t really tell your kids anything.
They told me their truth.