Thursday, February 06, 2003

I tried to write a poem today. I looked for words that do no exist. Someone is dying. A man, father, son and husband, an acquaintance and friend. He is dear to his father and his mother. He is dear, very dear, to his wife and their daughters. And friends are praying, strangers too, because for us he is dear too. And I can't find the words that do justice to the suffering, that reflect the effort and the love that pours forth in hopes of sustaining his life.

Every word seems to crash down; too weak to sustain the mass and volume of our grief and our sympathy for the ones who know the pain too intimately. Every word pales in comparison with the daily reality that this man has withstood, and that his wife, his true partner, has endured. It is frustrating trying to condense a lifetime into a paragraph, or trying to summarize sympathy and hope, caring and fear with metaphors, or phrases, aspiring to write something so sincerely comforting that pain subsides and strength is renewed. I long to say the right thing, do the right thing; I seek the words that reflect profound caring.

Please pray for Dave. Please pray for his family. Please pray for someone, anyone. Please answer my prayer; give a hug, serve a meal, send a letter, praise an unsuspecting stranger, search for those elusive words that console our hearts and renew our strength. Even when we cannot preserve someone's life, we must endeavor to comfort and uplift our souls.

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