Who I am.

I write about the landscape of grief, nature, and the wisdom of fools. The author of four books, my essays, poems, and reviews have been published in over 50 journals, including in the Huffington Post and Colorado Review. I’ve won the River Teeth Nonfiction Book Award, the Chautauqua and Literal Latte’s essay prizes, and my work has been nominated for four Pushcart Prizes and named a notable by Best American Essays. My account of hiking in Yosemite to deal with my wife’s death, Mountains of Light, was published by the University of Nebraska Press. http://www.markliebenow.com.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Delayed Grieving

One of my essays was just published by Modern Loss. It’s about camping with rock climbers in Yosemite and all of the things I left unsaid when they headed off to climb, knowing that sometimes climbers die. You can read it at - http://modernloss.com/looking-el-capitan/

There are good reasons for not dealing with grief. We have to go to work if we want to keep our job. The children have to be taken to school and helped with their homework. We have to go shopping and cook if we want to eat.

* If you would like to read the rest of this post, let me know and I’ll send it to you. *


  1. Hi, I'd love to crosspost this to HuffPost; please do email me at sahaj.kohli@huffingtonpost.com if you're interested!

  2. Thank you for taking time to share this. My mother died 5 years ago and I only now am dealing with it and it is hard to cry in front of people who love you but don't understand why now? I feel like I am dying inside but I am not afraid and know it will pass. I am relieved when I read about delayed grief in articles such as yours.

    1. Liana, thank you for writing. Yes, there are still too many people who think that grief will heal on its own, given time. But it sits there like a hard coconut waiting for us to open it up and deal with unresolved issues. I don't know how old you were when your mother died. It's hard at any age, but harder if she died when you were young. Take it slow. Find one or two friends your age who have lost a mother, and just start sharing. Or find someone older. Grief never goes completely away, but we learn how to deal with it and go on living.