A very dear friend contacted me a few years ago to tell me about the untimely death of someone very close to her. It had been years since we'd talked, but I listened as she told me all about him, that's what friends do, even when it felt uncomfortable. Sadly, I would be unable to attend the funeral, several states away, due to a prior commitment, and I regretted that I couldn't be there to support my friend in her grief.
She and I went back a lot of years as friends. She was the outgoing, zany one of our little duo. She could make any situation seem like the most hysterical adventure in the world. She could also be philosophical, though, and I remember long walks, and even longer talks, about anything and everything. I miss her.
The other day while I was browsing the internet, I came across this wonderful poem by David Harkins. I immediately thought of my friend and that phone call about her friend, years ago. How appropriate for anyone who has lost someone very dear to them. I want to reprint this today for you, for my friend, for everyone ...
"You can shed tears that he is gone,
or you can smile because he has lived.
You can close your eyes and pray that he'll come back,
or you can open your eyes and see all he's left.
Your heart can be empty because you can't see him,
or you can be full of the love you shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live in yesterday,
or you can be happy for tomorrow, because of yesterday.
You can remember him only that he is gone,
or you can cherish his memory and let it live on.
You can cry and close your mind,
be empty and turn your back.
Or you can do what he would want:
smile, open your eyes and your heart,
love, and go on.”