Imagination – Our Last Remembering

I wrote the following poem a few weeks ago for the funeral of a woman from the Bryndwr part of The Village Church – thus some of the specifics come from her story.  I wrote it as an imaginative exercise as I thought about the flash of memory that seems to be a common element in the experience of dying – at least that is what those who didn’t quite die tell us!

The invitation for those of us who remain, I suggest, is to accumulate memories for that final flash of memory.  Maybe you already have as fine a collection as you think you need.  But maybe there is time to cultivate a few more, or attempt to attend to the ones you wish you could discard but that you suspect will turn up like uninvited guests at a wedding!

You might like to reflect on the most treasured memories from your life that you would identify as the kind of ones you would wish to turn up and make their way into the poem that unfolds as you take your final breath.

In the space between
letting go and being received
is the rush of memory…

the eyes of my mother
and my reflection in them
and all that it meant to be held

the arms of my man
wrapped closely around me
as I wept my deep losses

the peals of laughter
as the girls chased each other
on the green grass

the long silence
of deep companionship
of a friend making no demands

the black boy peach harvest
and the bags gathered
to share with the neighbours

the hymn in church
and my voice catching
as a wave of wonder washed over me…

an angel voice sings a welcome
karanga mai, haere mai
take my hand, it is time

and the wonder of what has been
provides the space
for my soul to find its new footing