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I heard a child
This morning
Ask her mother,
“Why do leaves
Have to die?” as she

Crunched through a pile of brown crumbles On the sidewalk.

“The colors were
So pretty!” she said.
“Where
Did they go?”

I didn’t hear
The mother’s
Response. Maybe I would have said,

“We all fade,
Lose our color,
Why, just look
All around,
Everything
Will die.

But when a grain of wheat dies,
It bears much Fruit.” She might have looked at me quizzically.

Without that metaphor though,
I wouldn’t have been able to bear losing my Brother.

He was too young. It was so unexpected.

As I helped
Carry his
Body,

Someone said
To me, “This
Isn’t so
Hard for
You as for
The others, is it? You were only
His sister.”

I was controlling
My emotions
That day.
There was no room
For my emotions.

There was
My mother,
His wife,
His sons.

Their’s needed big space.

But my brother had been there
My entire life.
I was letting go
of someone
who had always
been a part of us.

To say his life
Had touched mine and many
While he lived,
Would be an
Understatement. It had.

But I wonder
If, even more,
His death?

There is no way
Of understanding
How in dying
We gain,
Unless I take hold of that grain of wheat analogy.

The earth and the heavens
Are the work of
God’s hands.
They will wear out
like the leaves, and
Be discarded.

But God is more
Enduring than
What He
Has made.

The first creation
Will give way
To a new
Creation.

If I didn’t believe this,
I couldn’t bear
To lose those
I love.

The moonrise tonight
Both amazed and
Comforted me.

It had been
One year
after
He died,
when the bountiful globe
Of the night poked
Its head up out of
The horizon,
The color red.

It had been my first
Moonrise. A glow of
Majestic,
Magenta light,
Turning orange
Before golden,
Began to rise.

I stared
Intently,
Until its big white face
Looked back
At me.

Settling onto its throne
In the sky, it shown
A light right to me,
A pathway
Of white.

As if
It were
A message sent

Directly to my heart from him—
“I’m here, sis!”

Moon over Lake Michigan 11.8.22

Ed Wenzler
Feb 17, 1954-
Nov 8, 2008

Inspired by Psalm 102:25-27, John 12:24.

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