Connecting with My Son at the Death of a Friend

[This prose was written after I conducted the funeral of my friend, my mentor, my surrogate father in the Lord. David and I visited him weeks before his death and as I move towards closing the visit in prayer, David ask, “Uncle Jim, may I say something before Dad prays?” Jim nodded. David said, “Uncle Jim, I want to thank you for all you did for my Dad. You have influenced three generations for the Lord.” The following took place after the grave side.]

The agony of temporal existence

Always longing; never fully grasping

Being loved, yet always elusive

That sense of connectedness


Your tender words at my friend’s departure

Elusiveness defied

That tender moment why you said,

“Dad, I am so sorry for the loss of your friend”


Those ten words alone agony dispelled not

But coupled with tenderness indescribable

Tears of joy

A Balm of Gilead inexplicable


Affirmed by your presence as I celebrated

A life well-lived; a friendship remembered

Your love like a laser pierced

The agony of temporal existence


Those simple ten words twice uttered

Tender compassion packaged

In that existential moment our lives connected

Father and son tethered by love

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