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Sunset Sonnets – A Loving Goodbye

As Love slips away what does one say?

Life is at the heart of the Poet but what place does death hold?

Sunset Sonnets is a book of poetry dedicated to the passing of my beloved wife Sylvia. Sylvia and I are saying the ‘long goodbye’ as she suffers with dementia and Alzheimer. As a person who suffers from mental illness this added stress is quite a test. To put my feelings down poetically is a great release.

Sunset Sonnets is above all  positive as it looks at death and dying from a Christian perspective. The work doesn’t dismiss the pain and agony of  losing a loved one but rather factors in the promise that we will all met again in some glorious ‘heaven’. To give you a metaphor, there is a dark cloud blocking the glorious light of the sun but the edges of the cloud are shining. It is a spiritual and uplifting book. 

Accepting the reality of death is something that began to talk hold in me when both my parents died seven years ago. My mother passing away in April and my dad in December. Sad to say I am glad my dad’s life ended in the same year as my mother as I could put that year behind me with good riddance.

During my struggle with my psychiatric problems my mother was always there for me. Whether it was visiting every night or fighting with the laboratory trying to get them to release my blood tests so I could get my medicine. Her presence was well felt. To my dad’s credit he was there financially and made a good effort to deal with my illness. He could really never accept the reality of my illness to a certain degree, wishing instead that I could have been a successful engineer and made lots of money.

When my mother was dying of cancer she was in a nursing home. I visited her every day save Wednesdays for an hour. On Sunday my wife and I would come between church services. Sylvia would bring my mother a whole bottle of her super chicken soup. We would freeze what she didn’t eat and she’d get some of the nutritional liquid every day of the week.

Dad’s death was in many ways harder. He would boast in his younger days when he died he would “Discover the greatest secret in life.” That was the scientist in him talking. Unfortunately for him he didn’t die as a scientist but rather as a human being. It was hard to see my dad call the catholic priest to give him the last rites. This is the man who I only saw step into a church building for weddings and funerals.

So I came to accept death after my parent’s demise, that my time too is going to come. It is an inevitable fact of life. Seeing Sylvia slip away into the abyss is a daily reminder. Every day I give her a big hug and I tell her that I love her.

So I invite you into the intimate spaces of my heart. I offer you to see my personal loving goodbye to my most dearly beloved in Sunset Sonnets.

Sunset Sonnet 4

I see the sun setting inside your eyes
I hear tomorrow whisper on your breath
Honesty is truth and truth never lies
I feel the Lord is calling soon comes death
Your hand in mine you’ll never be alone
We stuck together no matter the weather
In this world you’re the best I’ve ever known
Soon you shall fly high on golden feather
What are you thinking to smile so sweetly?
Do you see heaven with it’s streets of gold?
Your calm essence it soothes me completely
God bless your faith in the promises told
A last goodbye believe that it is true
When I say these final words “I Love you”

Sunset Sonnets – A Loving Goodbye

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.

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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2017). Sunset Sonnets – A Loving Goodbye. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 3, 2020, from


Last updated: 9 Nov 2017
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