Wednesday, November 30, 2005

11-30-05 Dad Update

Dad had the procedure yesterday to put a stint in his artery. The doctors put in the catheter (through his leg and up to his heart - in case you didn't know this - yikes!!). They went in with the camera to see where the blockage was so they could put in the stint.
Guess what. No blockage.
His heart is fine.

I'm thrilled, elated, joyous and aggrivated. As is my entire family.
Ok, better safe than sorry in a BIG way there...but here we are...right back at square one.

Now, back to MD Anderson to decide what happens next. Likely the original surgery to remove the tumor and the entire upper lobe of his left lung. More prayers. More patience.

I love you Daddy. I'm so glad you've been here for me this past week. I know that you understand how I feel and I needed to hear your voice to make it better.

Goodbye My Love

Fly on angels wings. Your old pal Moochie waits for you there. Tumble and have fun.
I'll come looking for you when my time comes. I hope, in whatever place you are, that the time between now and then seems no more than a minute long.

So I won't forget:
- -Mickey's favorite things were warm towels and tuna fish. We had a bunch of towels we would cycle through so he could have a fresh, clean, warm one - especially when the weather got cold. I would lay half of it on the floor, he would step on and I would fold the other half over him. Then he would twist and lay down so he was wrapped in a tight bundle....I used to say "like a papoose". I would tuck in all the corners and he would purr so gleefully.
- -Every moring he would meet me at the foot of the stairs. I would say "mornin" and he would say "meo-eon" - I think he was repeating back to me. It always had two syllables.
- -He loved to play under the sheets when I would make the bed. Sheets floating down on air were fascinating fun. He would come running any time he heard them.
-Every night before sleep, I would brush him. He loved to be brushed. He would purr just to see me with the brush. I would coo and he would bend and stretch into the brush. I would repeat "Momma loves Mickey." "Loves" was a big word between he and I.
- -He made eye contact with me. Always. We could lock eyes and he would purr. If I winked, he would wink too. If I closed my eyes, he would close his and then peek to see if mine were still closed.
- -He was never really mischevious. He bonded so closely with me that his only real need seemed to be to know where I was at all times. We could go for walks anywhere and he would follow right along. People thought that was crazy.
- -Mickey was so big. He was 20 inches long from his nose to his bum and at least 12 inches tall - if not taller. The most he weighed was 30lbs but he lost weight in the last year and he was very sleek. Everyone who saw him, vets included, had to stop and look in amazement. He was a beautiful thing - and I told people he was part doberman. Funny though, Mickey was a complete passifist.
- -As big as he was, he thought he could fit in a shoebox.
-He loved to be inside or under. He learned young how to open cabinet doors on his own and always wanted to sleep in the cabinets. He hated storms and would hide from them.
- -If I layed down next to him he would stroke and chew on my hair. I think he was petting me back.
-Sometimes he would get so happy he would drool.

We have been spared a few things by all this. He will never be tortured by another vet. His hips don't hurt him anymore. I will never have to decide when it's time to put him down.

My love, we had 15 years and that's a lot. I didn't know, when you were a kitten, that we would have so much time to share. I'm so lucky to have known you and to have loved you. I loved you every day of your life, just like I said. I will love you for the rest of mine.
You were MY first pet. My first baby. Thank you for letting me know how wonderful that could be.
I miss you my love.
I saw a glimpse of you walking into the house two days ago. You weren't really there...or were you? Maybe you are still here right now.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Sunday, November 27, 2005


I have walked every inch of the woods and the creek. I had no idea they went so deep. Must be five miles of brush and trees.
No sign. Nothing. No fur. No struggle. No nothing anywhere.

We put up flyers on the poles and put them in every mailbox. We dropped flyers at every vet in 10 miles and every shelter too.
Maybe. Just maybe.....

My husband returns home tomorrow night. I've already told him the situation. He feels sad and helpless too. I miss him terribly right now and need him here so we can comfort one another. Our two kitties are our only children.

You are all so kind to check back with me. It seems like half my life is sad right now. I hope I don't wear out my welcome.
Thank you all a hundred times over for every little prayer you say. Thank you for keeping us in your hearts.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

11-26-2005 Mickey

My heart is broken.
My dear, gentle, 15yr old cat has vanished. He went outside at 6:30a.m. this morning, as is our dialy routine, and he just never returned. I've been looking for him since 8:00a.m. I've walked miles calling his name, shaking bags of food. It isn't like him to stay gone more than an hour, and never that long in the morning. He hadn't even finished his breakfast.

I've lost my very best friend. My baby.
When he was a kitten I promised him I would love him every day of his life....and of mine.
I have nursed him back from the brink of death so many times. I have watched every morsel he has eaten and suffered his pains with him.
I hope, wherever he is, he is not in pain now.

I just wish he would come home. I know he would if he could.

I will spend this night staring out the window of the back door...praying...begging...crying.
I love you baby. Come home to me.

In ancient Greek and Egyptian mythology, the phoenix is a mythical bird and associated with the Egyptian sun-god Re and the Greek Phoibos (Apollo). According to the Greeks the bird lives in Arabia, nearby a cool well. Each morning at dawn, it would bathe in the water and sing such a beautiful song, that the sun-god stops his chariot to listen. There exists only one phoenix at the time.

When it felt its death approaching (every 500 or 1461 years), it would build a nest of aromatic wood and set it on fire, and was consumed by the flames. When it was burned, a new phoenix sprang forth from the pyre. It then embalmed the ashes of its predecessor in an egg of myrrh and flew with it to Heliopolis ("city of the sun"). There it would deposit the egg on the altar of the sun god.

The phoenix symbolizes rebirth of the spirit, immortality, resurrection, and life after death.

The Encylopedia Mythica

Friday, November 25, 2005

This happened entirely by accident and I giggled like a schoolgirl when I rendered it.
Guess what it is.

Life, The Universe and Everything

A hole had just appeared in the Galaxy. It was exactly a nothingth of a second long, a nothingth of an inch wide, and quite a lot of millions of light-years from end to end.

As it closed up, lots of paper hats and party balloons fell out of it and drifted off through the Universe. A team of seven three-foot-high market analysts fell out of it and died, partly of asphyxiation, partly of surprise.

Two hundred and thirty-nine thousand lightly fried eggs fell out of it too, materializing in a large wobbly heap on the famine-struck land of Poghril in the Pansel system.

The whole Poghril tribe had died out from famine except for one last man who died of cholesterol poisoning some weeks later.

The nothingth of a second for which the hole existed reverberated backward and forward through time in a most improbable fashion. Somewhere in the deeply remote past it seriously traumatized a small random group of atoms drifting through the empty sterility of space and made them cling together in the most extraordinarily unlikely patterns. These patterns quickly learned to copy themselves (this was part of what was so extraordinary about the patterns) and went on to cause massive trouble on every planet they drifted on to. That was how life began in the Universe.

The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy - Douglas Adams

Christmas Tree

Christmas Snow
Time to decorate the house. I'll be hanging garland and plugging in lights all day.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving

This is how we were. Family. Together. The grownup table and the kid's table. Turkey, ham, corn, potatoes, cranberry sauce, warm rolls and a hundred desserts.

I send this beautiful memory and warm feeling to each of you and to each of my family members. This Thanksgiving will not be like the past but that changes nothing in our hearts. I give thanks today for so many things.

Be sure to take a few moments and revel in the tradition of it all. Watch 5 minutes of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Then watch the game. Spoil yourself with food. And do not forget...The Grinch Who Stole Christmas comes on TV tonight. You must watch that. The original cartoon version. ;)

Have a wonderful day - each and every one.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


It dawns on me that I have two cats who have lived in a smokers environment their whole lives. They are 15 and 16 yrs old. Suddenly, there is no second-hand smoke.
I wonder if they'll go through withdrawals?? What if they get all stressed out and bitchy?

Ok, anyway - I've got to get to work early today so we can leave early for the holiday. So, I have no time for fun. If you do, I suggest you go play with the Subservient Chicken for a while. He's a hoot.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program..

Wow, what a nutso, busy day. I've been to work, to the bank, to McDonalds, back home, dropped the hubby at the airport, Blockbuster (5 movies yahoo), grocery store and finally home again.
I'm fairly certain I will be napping soon.

For all of you well-wishers, the latest theory is that my father will require a stint because of a blood clot in his leg. They have not yet proven the blood clot, so it's still a theory. We're all pretty bored of theories. Oh well. Another day.

Tonight is my first night of peace and quiet. Oh how I shall revel in it. Mmmmmm.
I miss you my dear hubby and I hope you have fun, but a little "me time" is just what the doctor ordered.

I promise, promise, promise to catch up on all of my delinquent blog surfing, so if you haven't seen me on your site, please know I'm thinking of you and hoping you're doing well.

Great big hugs and happy Turkey Day if you're travelling.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Foggy Brained

Well, I think I've actually used this one before. Does it look familiar?
It does a very nice representation of my thought processes at the moment.

On that note, please pardon me while I post a few good quotes I've been saving up.
They're likely to make more sense than I. Maybe....

The days are too short even for love; how can there be enough time for quarreling?
-Margaret Gatty

Wise sayings often fall on barren ground; but a kind word is never thrown away. (so very true!!)
-Sir Arthur Helps

Just as material things are made of dust, so too are our perceptions and thoughts mere dust. Just as it takes only a moment to wipe the dust from the surface of a mirror, so it takes only a moment to become enlightened, the moment all defiled intentions are cleared from our consciousness, we will see ourselves in the mirror of perfect truth.
-Master Hsing Yun, "Describing the Indescribable"

And most importantly:
You can't keep blaming yourself. Just blame yourself once, and move on.
-Homer Simpson

Good day all. May peace and love walk with you.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

11-20-05 I am a non-smoker

Two weeks ago I sat across from my father in our family living room. I told him of my plan to quit smoking. Two weeks of one med, then stop, then the other med, then freedom. This is the way he quit and so my confidence came across in my words.

His eyes welled with tears and rimmed with red. I can't recall ever seeing my father cry.
His voice cracked and he said "Nothing you could say to me would make me happier."

In that moment I saw his mother, his father, his uncles and grandfather. All of them showed though him as he fought his own pain. Three generations of cancer. Five slow, painful deaths. The burden in his mind at this very moment 35 years strong.

Today is my "quit date". I have been working toward it for more than a month. I am medicated and prepped. It is very very hard regardless.
I am listing things that I can do instead. I am trying to stay busy. I am emptying all ashtrays behind my husband so I am not tempted to inhale a half smoked opportunity.
Today is a hard day but I have my father in my heart and he is helping me. I even called him up to hear his voice and told him about my struggle. He understands and he encourages.
I will endure.
I hope he will as well.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Peace and hope

You must be a lotus, unfolding its petals when the sun rises in the sky, unaffected by the slush where it is born or even the water which sustains it!
Sai Baba

Friday, November 18, 2005

Things change every day

We do not know, from day to day, what we will feel or see or believe. Our lifes hang entirely on the next phone call.
I have a nagging fear that I have seen my father for the last time in this life.
I hope that is a truly irrational fear.

In July, my father was a strong man. He mowed the lawn, did the laundry, ran errands, worked 7am to 5pm each day. I do not see these thing happening in his future.

It hangs in the balance like a bad Lifetime movie. Every day we wait to hear that he survived the night. Each day the news seems worse than the day before. None of us understand why.

Could we rewind please?

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Neverland Part Two

Oh my, I stayed too long in Neverland and look what happened.

Sing with me, won't you?

"If growing up means

It would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree,

I'll never grow up, never grow up,

never grow up

Not me!

Not I,

Not me!

Not me!

I won't grow up,

I don't want to wear a tie.

And a serious expression

In the middle of July.

And if it means I must prepare

To shoulder burdens with a worried air,

I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up"

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Linny's Wish

"Where are you from?" asked Wendy.
"It's called Neverland, turn right at the second star and on till the morning."
"Wow," said Wendy, "how do you get there?"
"Why, of course, I fly!" said Peter Pan.
"Fly? You can fly?" asked Wendy.
Peter Pan said nothing and just flew around the room a couple of times.
"You can come with me if you want to." He said temptingly.
"Where? To Neverland? That would be so great! Teach me to fly!" she begged him.
"Ok." And he blew a little fairy powder on Wendy. "Now think of beautiful things and they will make you fly."
At this time, John and Michael woke up as well.
"Teach us to fly too!" they shouted.

All you need is a happy thought.
Here's mine:

Tell me yours.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

In prosperity, our friends know us; in adversity, we know our friends.
-John Churton Collins

Close your eyes and make a wish on my wishing star. Maybe if we wish hard enough our wishes will come true.

Monday, November 14, 2005


My brother arrived, unannounced, at my parents house on Sunday. It was great to see him. We all hugged and complimented. We got around to fixing everyone a soda or tea. Finally we ended up, like we always do, sitting around the living room telling stories and making each other laugh. This is the best of us. This is who we are.

I had a sudden revelation - there we were, father, mother, brother, sister and me. Our family. Like we used to be. Together in that house. Home.

I took a moment to let it wash over me; this spontaneous homecoming....accidental...unplanned....perfect...priceless.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Road trip

Well kids, tomorrow I am off to Houston again. I will be incommunicado until Sunday/Monday.
I know I'll miss out on a lot and probably won't catch up again for a week. You guys just keep saying amazing, profound and humorous things in the comment here. I'll keep an eye out.

Dad will get the first actual "diagnosis" tomorrow evening from MD Anderson. The questions on the table are: Is it really cancer? (still as yet undetermined) and Is it operable?
He STILL has that blasted 104 degree fever and terrible night sweats. We have got to have resolution soon.
Who knows what the weekend will have in store?

I'll see y'all down the road a piece. Be good and be safe.
You do squares and I'll keep playing with circles. :)

Or triangles. LOL


Remember when you watched the news at 6pm and 10pm? It was just local news, on local TV.
Well, now you can choose from 47 different news programs any time of day.
That's not a bad thing so much.
This morning I learned that the beach outlook in Ft. Lauderdale is quite good today. Malibu, CA too. Unfortunately, I have to sign onto the internet to figure out why my weather will be.

Also, I know all those anchorpersons on the local TV. Even the ones from my childhood. I saw Ron Stone just the other day on a TV ad. It was nice to see him. He looks well.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

"In the hour of adversity be not without hope For crystal rain falls from black clouds"

"Once I had the strength but no wisdom, now I have the wisdom but no strength"

"A stone thrown at the right time is better than gold given at the wrong time"
Persian Proverbs

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

I said "It's going to be a good day!" DAMMIT!

Today hasn't turned out so sparkly and happy so far.

I got a speeding ticket on the way to work this morning.
YES I was speeding but really! I haven't had a speeding ticket in 20yrs and I was speeding all that time. Why now?? (Wouldn't that always be the case anyway?)

And then I got to work and realized I would have to go it alone all day. Of course, it couldn't be a light or easy day either. Nothing but insane people with insane requests all day long!
You think I'm kidding? I got a call from a guy with "Starchaser" who is looking for a company to make salsa that they can market their rocket ships with. He even said "yours could be the first salsa in space."(Oh he was perfectly nice about it and I do love space exploration so we did chat for a while.)

I feel like I should be careful to step over cracks in the sidewalk. What am I going to do when I get home?! I have TWO black cats. How will they not cross my path??

Forget it!! I'll throw caution to the wind. Tonight I'm going to go out to eat with the hubby. I might choke on a chicken bone but I'm gonna live life on the edge! I might even buy a lottery ticket. YES! I LAUGH IN THE FACE OF ADVERSITY! I MOCK you Murphy's Law!
Good gawd! Would somebody drug me before I hurt myself.

10-8-05 Tuesday - Happy News and Hope

Here is my contribution to the world today:


You know the whole thing about "you get what you give" - Oh gawd, let that be true today!

Hugs and love and peace and happiness and wonderul things to all. (It's practically a buffet.)

And since we're at Disneyland - I couldn't resist:

When you wish upon a star,
makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
will come to you
If your heart is in your dreams,
no request is too extreme
When you wish upon a star
as dreamers do
Fate is kind,
she brings to those who love
The sweet fulfillment
of their secret longing
Like a bolt out of the blue,
fate steps in and sees you thru
When you wish upon a star,
your dreams come true.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Which Dwarf Are You?

hee hee. This explains a lot, huh?
This is my result.


Which of the 7 Dwarfs are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

All aboard

You knew I would do this.

GET ON BOARD. So far we have Linny, Autumn, Me, Kathy, and Trée. Someone wake up Tomeh. Phred has to come becaue he's the one that suggested we go back to Pooh's house and I agree. Christa and Greywulf, I'm flying you in! Also, Becky it's time for a vacation! Ashley they won't miss you at work. Fishy - I gotta have that cat!!

Let's go kids. Autumn has a list of songs; 99 bottles of beer and She'll be Coming Round the Mountain. I'm throwing in "Black Betty" and "Blinded By The Light" and my favorite 3 part harmony "Old Black Water".

We've got a game of twister for the bus. Apparently clothing is optional.
Who's bringing the blender and the margerita mix?

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Chaos...and a lot of babbling

----babbling--- I could go on for hours today about my inability to make a point.
My thought processes are so fractured that I cannot develop an image to accommodate my brain. This is as close as I could get and I assure you it isn't close at all.


Of late, I am having a very difficult time organizing my thoughts. It seems that all around me is noise and every voice inside of me has a different direction. Friday was the worst yet of these days. I simply could not turn down the noise. At any given time we are surrounded by sound. The washing machine, the dryer, the air conditioner, traffic, planes, the drip of the faucet, the television or radio, the howl of wind, the hum of this pc.

My grandfather has a hearing aid. He has the ability to turn off all sound.
It is not entirely right of me to envy this. And even if I had such an ability, what would quiet the voices inside?

And then I read this
"If you wish to understand yourself, you must succeed in doing so in the midst of all kinds of confusions and upsets. Don't make the mistake of sitting dead in the cold ashes of a withered tree."

I think I am waiting for the world to quiet down, or I am expecting to find some withered tree to sit beneath, as if that will bring me to a place of peace or center. It is high time I start looking for solitude right here where I stand. Right here in the middle of this chaos. There is so much I am not seeing just now. It is time I remember how to be still.


Saturday, November 05, 2005

Musical Interlude: PHONOVOX

It's time to lighten things up a bit.

PHONOVOX has released their second album "DEMOS ARE FOREVER"

"Phonovox is the sound of voices. The sound of air, moving hearts and hips. The sound of guitar and vocal melodies wrestling and riding with the synergy of bass and drums. Phonovox is a calling out and a coming together; the sensations of a shared experience."

My good friend Pete (that's him on the left trying to making a point) is a member of the band.

Have a listen to "Ghosts" on their music page. (My link didn't work! ACK!)
Yeah Pete, I said I wanted to post "Baggage" which I know you wrote, but Ghosts struck a chord with me. (ha ha, struck a chord....get it?)
They've got some other great songs on their site so give 'em a listen.

Phonovox hails from the jungles of the Big Apple. Their next big gig is at the Continental in Manhattan on Sunday Nov. 13th at 9pm. I know the amazing energy that Pete brings to a room so if you're anywhere in the area you must check out their live shows.


Oh child what are you waiting for?
Come down; lay it out on the floor
She say’s “I can’t explain. Words don’t seem to mean anything”
“They swirl around then flow down the drain; I’m out of the game
But I’m holding on”

Don’t tell me it’s time to come home
Don’t tell me anything at all

When she’s down she’s hard to get close to
But inside she’s waiting and waiting and waiting for your next move
Saying “I want to be alone, no one’s home; don’t telephone”.
“The thought of you cut’s down to the bone; I’m not made of stone
But I’m holding on”.

Don’t tell me it’s time to come home
Don’t tell me anything at all

Got to put the women and children first
Dry your eyes everybody hurts
Hit the ground the hearts an open book
And in the end you’re left with what you took
Break skin see what’s inside
Keep busy it’s the only way to hide
Pick scabs and some wounds never heal
Yeah that’s the way that proves you can feel
Make a point to touch the ones you love
Pray they see you from above
Everyday you’ve got to make the most
And in the end you’ll exorcise your

Oh God you’ve got to help with this one
But if she’s already gone I’m wasted
Don’t leave me alone no one’s waiting for me by the phone
My hearts a bruise as I sink like a stone
The cracks have grown
But I’m holding on

Don’t tell me it’s time to come home
Don’t tell me anything at all

(Yo Pete! What happened to the reverb? I liked the reverb! Bwwahahaha)

Friday, November 04, 2005


Sometimes I hear his voice inside my head. It is full of confusion, pain and fear.
Everything about my heart is broken.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Back to Pooh Corner

It's hard to explain how a few precious things
Seem to follow throughout all our lives
After all's said and done I was watching my son
Sleeping there with my bear by his side
So I tucked him in, I kissed him and as I was going
I swear that the old bear whispered
"Boy welcome home"

So help me if you can
I've got to get back
To the House at Pooh Corner by one
You'd be surprisedThere's so much to be done
Count all the bees in the hive
Chase all the clouds from the sky
Back to the days of Christopher Robin and Pooh

He's such a happy boy. "Stay happy my love."

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

To smoke or not to smoke

"If you are losing a tug-of-war with a tiger, give him the rope before he gets to your arm. You can always buy a new rope."
-Max Gunther

"We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about."
-Charles Kingsley

It is my intention to quit smoking...ten days from tomorrow. That sounds like one of those perpetual dates; "The sixth Thursday of next month." or for that matter "When pigs fly.".

It is not. It is a real and calculated date given me by my doctor. Because that's how many Wellbrutrin he gave me. See how this works?

I was amused by his plan and want to share it.
First - you have to want to quit. Really want it. (I think I have that covered under the circumstances.)
Second - take the WB for 10 days and on the 11th day stop smoking. Also on the 11th day, take low dose Xanax for 5 days to get over the anxiety.
(I took a Zoloft once in my life. It made me a complete zombie. I sat on the couch for 8hrs completely incoherent. I'm a little concerned abut this Xanax idea.) At the same time I should have an ample supply of stir straws to chew on. (I'm going to have a disgusting stir-straw addiction?)
Third, and this is the important part - put a jar in the house. Every day put the money in that jar that you would have spent on cigarettes. In one year, do something fun with that money. ALSO - write the name of someone you hate on that jar. If you smoke, give all that money to that person. He told me that a man of color gave $735 to David Duke - Grand Dragon of KKK. That man now has a horrible aversion to smoking. I can see how this would work.
Here's my problem. I don't really hate anyone. I can't think of anyone that I wouldn't want to give money to. Maybe Wal-Mart. Ugh. They give me chills.
How does one take the time to think of someone to hate??

Ok - so the day will be 11-20-05. It will be a Sunday.
Wish me luck. Until then, don't be surprised if my rantings become incoherent. I will be sufficiently drugged...for all the right reasons.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Faith is a wholly individual thing. It is more unique, with it's intricacies, than even DNA. Faith is built from perception and from strife. We believe, each of us, what we need to believe in order to come to terms with our existence....and our mortality.
I will shun no one their faith, whatever that may be, for I know that each of us needs what we believe. Not to believe, that is still a belief system and it is borne the same way and serves the same purposes.

There are many times in our lives when our belief system is tested. Each test changes that faith. Each time we explore it and interpret it and twist it to meet necessity. We may find our faith holds us safe. We may find our faith gives us hope. We may throw out our faith all together or seek a new belief entirely.
It is not wrong to do so.

All faiths is about hope. Whatever that hope may be.
That hope may be to feel safe or to be immortal or to control the world. Still, it is about hope.

**Dad will be released from Hospital #1 today. He will go home in no better, perhaps in worse, shape than he went in 13 days ago. He will go home and then MD Anderson (Hostpital #2) will decide the next plan.
At least...there is a plan?**

The following is a very long poem. Likely to fill the page.
I memorized it once and it has somehow become a part of my belief system. Read it all if you like or just peices or not at all.
It is here because the words won't leave my head.


TO HIM who in the love of Nature holds
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language; for his gayer hours
She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
And eloquence of beauty, and she glides
Into his darker musings, with a mild
And healing sympathy, that steals away
Their sharpness, ere he is aware. When thoughts
Of the last bitter hour come like a blight
Over thy spirit, and sad images
Of the stern agony, and shroud, and pall,
And breathless darkness, and the narrow house,
Make thee to shudder, and grow sick at heart;—
Go forth under the open sky, and list
To Nature's teachings, while from all around—
Earth and her waters, and the depths of air—
Comes a still voice—Yet a few days, and thee
The all-beholding sun shall see no more
In all his course; nor yet in the cold ground,
Where thy pale form was laid, with many tears,
Nor in the embrace of ocean, shall exist
Thy image. Earth, that nourished thee, shall claim
Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again,
And, lost each human trace, surrendering up
Thine individual being, shalt thou go
To mix forever with the elements;
To be a brother to the insensible rock,
And to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain
Turns with his share, and treads upon. The oak
Shall send his roots abroad, and pierce thy mould.
Yet not to thine eternal resting-place
Shalt thou retire alone, nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world,—with kings,
The powerful of the earth,—the wise, the good,
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past,
All in one mighty sepulchre. The hills
Rock-ribbed and ancient as the sun; the vales
Stretching in pensive quietness between;
The venerable woods—rivers that move
In majesty, and the complaining brooks
That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
Old Ocean's gray and melancholy waste,—
Are but the solemn decorations all
Of the great tomb of man! The golden sun,
The planets, all the infinite host of heaven,
Are shining on the sad abodes of death,
Through the still lapse of ages. All that tread
The globe are but a handful to the tribes
That slumber in its bosom.—Take the wings
Of morning, pierce the Barcan wilderness,
Or lose thyself in the continuous woods
Where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound,
Save his own dashings,—yet the dead are there:
And millions in those solitudes, since first
The flight of years began, have laid them down
In their last sleep—the dead reign there alone.
So shalt thou rest; and what if thou withdraw
In silence from the living, and no friend
Take note of thy departure? All that breathe
Will share thy destiny. The gay will laugh
When thou art gone, the solemn brood of care
Plod on, and each one as before will chase
His favorite phantom; yet all these shall leave
Their mirth and their employments, and shall come
And make their bed with thee. As the long train
Of ages glide away, the sons of men,
The youth in life's green spring, and he who goes
In the full strength of years, matron and maid,
The speechless babe, and the gray-headed man—
Shall one by one be gathered to thy side
By those, who in their turn shall follow them.

So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan which moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.