She died…our friend…it’s been three years now…

and we still wonder why.

Why was she chosen?

Why her?

Why did she have to die?


She died while she was still so young…lifted up to heaven’s shore

while she had so much more to do…so much life to still live for.


She died even though she was a good person,

even though she lived life enthusiastically,

even though she had a loving husband…and a happy family.


She died even though she was kind and tender.

It’s still so hard to comprehend.

She died even though many people loved her,

even though she had a host of friends


She died even though we prayed for her.

We prayed…then we prayed some more.

She died even though we prayed harder for her

than we’ve ever prayed before.


She died leaving many of us feeling alone.

We were devastated…our life marred.

She died leaving many of us feeling lost.

our hearts broken…forever scarred.


She died leaving us wishing we had more time together.

There was so much more we could have shown her.

She died leaving many of us feeling weak…

but stronger having known her.


Yes, she died…our friend…three years ago

and still we wonder why…

Why was she chosen?

Why her?


Why did she have to die?

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She was just a woman in our neighborhood…she did what a neighbor does

She was not related to us…yet we would have sworn she was…


And although we’re sure it wasn’t part of her plan…her goal…her objective…her aim

She played a part in shaping the people we became.


We all grew up and moved away…the old neighborhood didn’t last…

Still, we had a chance once we were grown to revitalize our past…


We met again…all of us older…her life now months from the end…

where our old feelings transformed us from old neighbors to old friends.


That often happens as we grow older…as our hair turns a shade of grey

the age difference no longer matters…the years between us fade away.


But now it was time to say goodbye…she was taking her last bow

and the three of us got together and began to wonder how…


How do we show her what she meant to us…How do we let her know….

How lucky we were to have her in our lives…so many years ago.


She was sleeping.

Could she hear us?

Should we even try?

How do we tell her how we feel?

How do we say goodbye?


The nurse said, “Just talk to her…have a little chat.

If she can’t hear you…no harm done…but if she can…Imagine that!”


So we sat down at her bedside…we gave her hand a squeeze

and we shared old times, old stories, old laughter…old memories…


As we were lost in our reveries of a different time…a different place…

the nurse quietly pointed at our friend…who had a smile on her face…


And we thought what better ending could we give her

as her spirit soars up to the sky…

old friends together sharing memories...


That’s how you say goodbye!

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Because I could not stop for Death – 

He kindly stopped for me –  

The Carriage held but just Ourselves –  

And Immortality.     (Emily Dickinson  1830-1886)


The call came unexpectedly breaking the serenity of the night

A friend I knew while growing up…had given up the fight…


She was loved when she was living.

She was loved the day she died…as witnessed by her entire family

standing by her side.


And though I hadn’t seen nor talked to her in over 50 years

my mind opened the door to her memories…and I was moved to tears.


So many memories…so vivid…so easy to discern…

Memories stored away for all these years…awaiting my return.


I remember how she lived at the bottom of the hill…just a short walk down from me

I remember spending many days and nights…feeling part of her family.


So many memories came rushing now.

So many memories to make me smile.

I was happy to let them wash all over me…and so I lingered there awhile.


I knew her when her fire burned bright…

and though I missed the rest…and I missed her fading embers

I’ll never forget her…because I can’t forget someone

who gave me so much to remember…


Because she could not stop for Death – 

He kindly stopped for her, I see –  

And so she rode off with that smile I’ll cherish forever…  


to Immortality.

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