My Lament

I lost my friend
    did I tell you?
        She died.

An ache gnaws my heart, persistent, sadly reminds.

She walked early, loving
    morning light
        early walkers
            fresh crisp air.

Late afternoon for me
    light warm golden
        from the setting sun
            late walkers with dogs.

So many topics we explored – politics, ethics, food, multicultural relations
religions international and personal
the priceless value of family, friends, and strangers
and finally
what our remaining future holds.

We spoke our minds
    bared our fears
        our joys
            our questions.

In the end, no world problems solved
    no personal stances altered, just
        two souls lovingly understanding
            one another.

For both, the end hovers in sight
    the final battle cannot be won
        in our hands only the skirmishes before the end
            our fight to make our last days good.

Our challenges?
    Her failing heart
        my dementia
            trivial things like that.

I point to the extra years she has already squeezed from this heart
    why not more?
She claims dementia must be fast to beat my declining pool of years
    why not this?

Then we look into one another’s eyes
        clasp hands
            sit close together
                and remember.

I lost a friend
    did I tell you?
         She died.

Dedicated to the memory of Elizabeth MacLeod, an outstanding person, loved by all.


Filed under Poetry

14 Responses to My Lament

  1. Lorna

    A lovely tribute to Elizabeth and to connecting with others.

  2. A lovely tribute, Mom.

  3. I’m so sorry. To be close to another human being is the most rewarding thing you can do, and the biggest heartache at the end. However many years you had together is never enough. I am crying for you and for myself…I have a sister…

    • Marjorie

      Barbara – Yes this is an experience that we all share – losing someone we love. At least we can try to remember how fortunate we are when we have those we are close to – even if we eventually lose them.

  4. Leone

    You have such a wonderful gift with words (and many other things). How wonderful to have that “heart to heart” connection with another person. Your words have made me pause to appreciate those dear to me…I include you in that group!

    • Marjorie

      Thank you, Leone – not every one is privileged to still have connections with someone she held as a baby! You have so many in your clan to have those connections you speak of. We are blessed.

  5. Alison Uhrbach

    I’m reading between the lines and guessing that your friend was someone you connected with in the latter part of your life? How wonderful that you made that connection, and reached out to become close. None of us know how long we have, and yet we often hesitate to form new friendships, or to discuss the issues that bring us closer. Always sad to lose a friend, but we’re always better for having made the friendship.

    • Marjorie

      Alison – Your intuition informed you well. I met this friend when I moved to Vancouver in January of 2012. It was as if we had been friends for years, a gift I will treasure and a loss that hurts.

  6. Eleanor Jackson

    I believe you and Elizabeth were soul mates and each of us only has 2 or 3 such relationships in our lifetime. The length of the relationship has nothing to do with the quality. This is a beautiful tribute to Elizabeth. May your heart be slowly eased in the weeks to come.

    • Marjorie

      Good to have your comments, Eleanor. I admit it is difficult. Having her around made my adjustment to the residence much easier and enjoyable. We each had our own lives and activities, but enjoyed the time we had together a great deal. Lucky to have known her.

  7. Dorothy

    If we are lucky we have a few good friends like Elizabeth. Sometimes they are our spouses and come to us early in life. Sometimes they come to us later – either as new friends or second spouses, but regardless of the when they appear in our lives, they are the flints of gold in the river sands of life. My heart is with you.