On October 10th, 2008, a woman entered my life who I've never met, and who I'll never forget.
Initially, I was just going to keep the poem to myself, but something felt wrong about that. So I went online and, by searching the Grand Junction Free Press, found the name of a family member who I might be able to contact. And I did, and explained the how the poem came to be, and asked permission to post it- to my delight I was given permission.
And that's the story and context behind this poem- Heather's poem. As I said, though we've never met, as long as there's breath in this body, I'll never forget her.
An Elegy on the Passing of Heather Tripler
There’s snow there now where once she lay
Alone that Autumn eve
And though that day seems far away
I still lamenting grieve
For she- a daughter, mother, friend
She pined, I’m sure, in grief
For hard distraught there came her end
By Death, that surly thief
She roamed, she roamed through deepest dark
Alone, no friend to guide
And when she came upon that park
There on a bench she died
No tear went forth, nor word was said
To her who lay asleep
Til angels by her bed were led
In solace ever deep
“Awake, dear child, slumber’s past”
They said in one accord
“Come to the warmth and light at last
For therein is the Lord”