life in and around NYC is insane

Thursday, April 8, 2010

how we live...

The Dash
by Linda Ellis

I read of a man who stood to speak
At the funeral of a friend
He referred to the dates on his tombstone
From the beginning to the end

He noted that first came the date of his birth
And spoke the following date with tears,
But he said what mattered the most of all
Was the dash between those years

For the dash represents all the time
That he spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved him
Know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not how much we own;
The cars, the house, the cash,
What matters is how we live and love
And how we spend our dash.

If we could just slow down enough
To consider what’s true and real
And always try to understand
The way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger,
And show appreciation more
And love the people in our lives
Like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect,
And more often wear a smile
Remembering that this special dash
Might only last a while.

So, when your eulogy is being read
With your life’s actions to rehash
Would you be proud of the things they say
About how you spent your dash?


Christina said...

This poem was read at the funeral of a co-worker a few years and instantly became one of my favorites.

I posted on my blog at the time. A few months later I received an email asking me to remove it due to a copyright violation! To this day it is the ONLY time something I've posted has created such a request (and I snag stuff off the 'net all the time, always with proper credit if it's available).

Just an FYI - I hope it doesn't happen to you as I think it is a beautiful poem that *should* be spread out as much as possible!

songbird's crazy world said...

the Rabbi read it at my aunt's funeral yesterday. it was meant to be shared, i will comly if asked to remove it but I hope I'm not asked to do that.

Joyce-Anne said...

It's a very well-written poem. I, too, have heard it before. Thank you for sharing and reminding us of its message.

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