“Death crept quietly into the room
Where once there was laughter, talk and tears
Now it is no more
Death has replaced life.”
Judith Baxter 1938 –
It was just another Thursday for me and for many others. But for one family at least, it was not. I arrived at the hospice to be told that a patient had died.
I had got to know this particular patient over three weeks that he had been in the Hospice. A cheerful youngish man (difficult to say just how old he was – maybe 40) he was a joy to speak to and was always surrounded by his wife and family. I do not know this man’s name. Only first names are used at the hospice, but I was cheered by him on Thursdays when I saw him.
He had obviously come to terms with his life ending but I don’t think his wife and family will have yet.
So for his wife and family I offer this poem from David Harkins (replacing the pronoun she with he):
“You can shed tears that she is gone
or you can smile because she has lived.
You can close your eyes and pray that she’ll come back,
or you can open your eyes and see all that she’s left.
Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her
or you can be full of the love you shared…………
…………Or you can do what she’d want:
Smile, open your eyes, love and go on.”
David Harkins 1959 – Silloth, Cumbria, UK
Read the full poem here
And I will share my rainbow with them.
- Thursday Lunch (growingyoungereachday.wordpress.com)
- A Hospice House Story: How Phil Hummel’s End of Life Journey in Hospice Gave His Family Peace of Mind and Granted Him a Gentle, Dignified Death (leoadambiga.wordpress.com)
- Another Wedding (growingyoungereachday.wordpress.com)
- Hospice Story: Charlie (thoughtstomull.com)