Tuesday, July 25, 2006

In Memory

If the measure of a man
is the size of his heart
and the number of lives
deeply touched in knowing him,
then Kevin Joseph Frances Hagen
was as large as they come.

Open & giving,
not for himself nor personal gain;
that was Kevin to the core.
He embraced all he met,
big grin & warm interest,
thrilled by each new meeting,
excited to share his time,
eager to teach or learn.

We are left blessed
to have known him,
enriched by his goodness,
wanting just one more hour
to bask in his warmth.

Thanks for the memories,
Kevin J. Hagen
3/21/53 - 7/19/06

See also Drive to Chatham

Friday, July 21, 2006

Naught that I am

I am nothing:
a speck in time,
air breathed in,
an exhale.
A proverbial speck,
a disappointment to myself,
a disappointment to my Creator.
Barely a ripple shall mark my passing
in the great pond of life.
Though I see beauty all around me,
my vision seems naught but a curse,
my gifts go wasted by my own inadequacies,
my propensity to failure,
my inability to follow through.
Though life & love you may not miss me,
naught that I am, I shall miss you.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

In memory, introspectively

What to say at the loss of another friend?
At 46, one per year is too many too soon.
And each one leaves me remorsefully reminded of the poor effort I have made to be a friend.
So much unknown, so little shared,
selfishly I float through life
giving little, learning nothing.

I grieve at the loss,
at opportunity lost,
still too hung up on myself to be any comfort to loved ones left behind.

Kevin, I shall never play "Colored Aristocracy" on the banjo without thinking of you;
haven't been able to for the past two years,
since you taught it to me, in fact.

Big, gentle, kind men amaze me,
you no less than any,
as you patiently gave of yourself to give that song to me.
Forgive me if I threatened you
as you faced your mortality.
I hoped only to give your Beth,
amazing in her own right,
incredibly strong & loving at your side to the end,
a little bit of hope to carry on,
a friend in her dark hours.

I grieve for hearts so in love,
separated so soon by life's inevitable end.
I admire that deepest of loves,
jealous in a way for the shared experience
that forges two hearts into one for all eternity.

And, still,
life goes on.

Not very poetic, I know,
Beth, but please accept my
deepest, heartfelt sympathies.
Know that I am here
& there for you
should you need a friend.