Thursday, June 19, 2008


That's my Mom and Dad sharing one of many, many laughs, last year at their Fiftieth wedding anniversary. The smiles, laughter, and love of them both are the remembrances I'll carry with me always. The pain will fade, but the love will remain.

This'll be a much shorter post than last time; just a few poems I found that were particularly meaningful or helpful to me recently.

First, the poem I read at our family's gathering- I found this poem years ago, and was always struck by the power and passion of the words. Later, I would come to associate this with my father, because the words so accurately described his stand against his weakening health. It was, originally written for a father, and the words really embody a son's love and admiration and awe of his father.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
-Dylan Thomas

I really love this next one- I love how it takes the sting out of the loss... not through humor, or distraction, or anything like that, but by drawing on a lifetime of experiences and using words to truly console the grieving. I think my dad would have loved this poem- I can practically hear him saying these things to us...
Death is nothing at all
I have only slipped away into the next room
I am I and you are you
Whatever we were to each other
That we are still
Call me by my old familiar name
Speak to me in the easy way you always used
Put no difference into your tone
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow
Laugh as we always laughed
At the little jokes we always enjoyed together
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was
Let it be spoken without effort
Without the ghost of a shadow in it
Life means all that it ever meant
It is the same as it ever was
There is absolute unbroken continuity
What is death but a negligible accident?
Why should I be out of mind
Because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you for an interval
Somewhere very near
Just around the corner

All is well.

-Henry Scott-Holland

I was going to post more, but I think these two are perfect as is.

I'll be back next Wednesday.

Have a good weekend.

Music: "You Are Loved (Don't Give Up)" - Josh Groban

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