Thank you to everyone who has expressed interest in this project! Our book is available here.
We are now 25 writers, expressing our thoughts, feelings, confusion, realizations, even humor after the death of our mother or father. In many cases, grief was delayed by activity. In some, the role of parent was pushed off on the child. In others, something was learned after cleaning out the family home.
But in each case, the writing exhibits a portrait of a family, a loss, a complicated or troubling relationship, or the lack of one. The stories are human, personal, and ultimately universal by nature.
It is an honest assessment of how the death of a parent impacts the child.
The fact that the child is also an adult is what makes these stories so rich. They are filled with regret, with questions left unanswered, with late admission of the depth of the parent’s love, or the ever-present understanding that this relationship, between parent and child, is one of the most complicated of our lives: sometimes satisfying, often incomplete. The stories cover a broad and varied view of the days – and even years – after a parent’s death.
Prompted by a need to express the impact of the death of the editor’s own father in the fall of 2015, The Late Orphan Project started to take shape as the submissions came in. Poetry, essays, journal entries – each writer facing the days after the services, the burials. Some days are better than others, some events are easier than others, and some anniversaries are impossibly hard. But the idea that the impact of this close loss is felt somehow less by an adult losing an older person is easily refuted.
Welcome to These Winter Months: The Late Orphan Project Anthology, edited by Anne Born, The Backpack Press, (September, 2016).
The writers are:
Amy McVay Abbott
Lourdes A. Gautier
Anne Shrock Ott
Barb Hamp Weicksel
Joan Becht Willette
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org