All The Way – A Poem by Betsy S. Franz
So nothing lasts forever
Your pets will die
Your job will end
Your kids will grow and move away
Your life will end
The world will end
Sure as the nighttime brings an end to every day
So surely love can never last
How can anything as delicate and rare
As fragile and as meaningful as love keep growing
And keep shining bright
When even nighttime is ended by the light?
So knowing that all things will end
Should we live our life in fear?
Mourning the inevitable end
Of all that we hold dear?
Should we not get too committed
And not get too attached
So we’ll never have to feel
The emptiness and pain that endings bring?
We can live this way…
A protected, flat-line life
So when our jobs, our pets, our loves
Come to an end and go away
We can turn, unharmed, and say
“I feel safe. I feel okay. It was just
a dog / a job / a friend
I didn’t love them anyway.”
Or we can grab each joy that we can find
And we can leave all fear and doubt behind
And we can love things all the way
And squeeze out all the love and passions these things hold
And fill our lives with all the highs and happy times
That we can find
And when they go
We’ll turn, a little bruised, but quite content to say
“God, that was great! It’s sad its gone away,
But at least I got to love it, anyway”
For somebody even life will end
And we’ll look back and have the choice to see
A lifetime filled with passion, love and highs and happy times
Or a flat-line life of no love…
but neither misery.
And as we lie there
And our world is turning gray
All the pain we’ve missed in life will hit us hard that day
If we think about it and we find we have to say,
“It’s over now, my life has slipped away.
But it was only life….
I never lived it anyway.”
~~ Author’s note: Written in early 1990s, before I learned to live and love all the way.