Writing the Distance: Sandra Spargo

The Covid 19 pandemic is isolating Alaskan writers. We can no longer attend workshops or public readings. The coffee bars where we met with other writers are closed. To bridge these physical gaps, 49 Writers is providing this on-line forum for Alaskans writing the distance. Today, Sandra Spargo provides a poem and photograph.

By Sandra Spargo

My husband Frank died suddenly almost five years ago. I have no necessity nor desire for another man in my life. Coronavirus aloneness magnifies my loss and loneliness.

Living alone during this scary and challenging time goes beyond the ordinary of grief’s loneliness—crying and laughing alone, eating and sleeping alone, walking alone and watching the sunset alone. When I lost him, I lost purpose.

Now, as a retired senior and widow, I search for purpose and individual identity. My identities as a friend, mother, mother-in-law and grandmother are intact and strengthened. However, these identities carry limited purpose. Friends and family are busy and have no need of me in their everyday lives. Frank and I purposely needed each other every day for 49 years.

I speak from the heart to widows, especially to those who have lost husbands to the coronavirus.

We do not get over loss—we learn to carry it everyday. Loss encourages us to seek God’s comfort and to create purpose as we choose to live alone.

On the other hand, seek one another to share loss and loneliness. Moreover, tell your family that you are lonely. We do not want to be a burden. Yet,

No man is an island
entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.

English metaphysical poet John Donne (1572-1631)


Sandra Spargo is a freelance journalist, having written for nonprofits, newspapers, and magazines. A former Alaska resident, she now resides in Grass Valley, California.

2 thoughts on “Writing the Distance: Sandra Spargo”

  1. Dear sweet friend
    I pray for your loss of your beloved Frank.
    Your loneliness in this time of isolation is so felt.
    Wanted you to know that you are loved by many friends and family.
    I would love to make plans to have a distance lunch very soon.
    GOD Bless you

  2. Dearest Judy,

    Thank you so much for the distant lunch invitation.

    Thank you for your thoughtfulness and support.

    GOD Bless you, too!

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