Monday, May 17, 2010


We've been in a no-time here. After months of successful treatments—grueling, yet successful—my friend Dan's leukemia resurged like a tsunami. Last Thursday, he came home to be with family and friends.

This morning, I was reminded of this poem by Stanley Kunitz.

The Long Boat

When his boat snapped loose
from its mooring, under
the screaking of the gulls,
he tried at first to wave
to his dear ones on shore,
but in the rolling fog
they had already lost their faces.
Too tired even to choose
between jumping and calling,
somehow he felt absolved and free
of his burdens, those mottoes
stamped on his name-tag:
conscience, ambition, and all
that caring.
He was content to lie down
with the family ghosts
in the slop of his cradle,
buffeted by the storm,
endlessly drifting.
Peace! Peace!
To be rocked by the Infinite!
As if it didn't matter
which way was home;
as if he didn't know
he loved the earth so much
he wanted to stay forever.

—Stanley Kunitz

If you have any good thoughts to spare, please send them to Dan and Beth and their family.


T. Clear said...

Sorry to hear about your friend, Joannie. Sending good thoughts into the universe....

Joannie said...

Thanks, T.

I've been thinking about you and the friend you recently lost.