By Robert Brooks
Before my Mother passed into the Spirit World, I was given a perfect opportunity to offer her my final thoughts.
Ours was a tenuous relationship at times, often marked by long periods of silence. Her fears concerning my chosen faith course would often lead up to our intermittent silences. Before she ascended, my mother was diagnosed with vascular dementia, and that robbed her of her short-term memory. When I learned of her illness and its dire effects, it came to me clearly that my actions and words would be offered to insure her successful, unfettered ascension.
And so, my wife and I made plans to visit. She had moved far away, but there was still time. When we arrived at her home, my Mother looked both happy and relieved. Our last visit was a good time; sharing time, stories, laughter, and memories of long ago.
The day before my Mother passed, my sister, her caregiver, emailed to say Mom was fading fast and Hospice didn’t see her living much longer. If I wanted to, I could call and my sister would place the phone near her on speaker so Mom could hear and I could offer my farewell. My oldest son, viewing my distress with this sudden yet expected turn of events, suggested I sleep on my final words and compose my thoughts the next morning.
Following his advice, early the next day, somewhat surprisingly, the paper pulled the ink from my pen as fast as I could write. Forty some minutes after I got through on the phone and offered her these words, my Mother passed into the Spirit World where she now enjoys a successful ascension.
January 31, 2017
On the eve of your passing, Mom, I offer these final thoughts.
By Donna Ferrantello
The Geese at Belvedere Holy Rock
It was early morning.
Walking at the Belvedere Estate along the Hudson River…
I heard a great flock of Canadian geese from afar away,
And then, saw them circling around in the sky.
They flew off in the distance…honking, honking, honking,
I continued my walk…
in prayerful wondering about nature’s ways…
Then, one flock of geese returned,
Riding high — as though on an invisible highway
of going places at high speeds —
and somehow, almost decidedly
circling and returning to see the rock where I stood,
their honking stopped…
One by one —
each goose slowed to an abrupt stop way above my head….
Each one glided down,
braking like tiny airplanes preparing for landing…
and each landed gently on the ground near me….
A congregant of geese now stood attentively on the grass,
next to our Holy Prayer Rock on the hillside
(where many prayers have been offered here….)
All awaited in this landscape amidst the spacious beyond.
Again, from the distant sky,
a second honking flock of geese circled around above me
and they too stopped honking….
Noiselessly, one by one,
each began to float down,
with wings extended like a parachute.
Each floating goose
made landing on the grassy hillside.
by Paul Herman
Author’s note: Here are three of my poems. The first is about the preciousness and grace of mother’s love. The second, about the central person or savior that brings God’s love to us and awakens that love for others in us. The third is about the parental heart — our parental heart reaching out for all God’s lost children.
Mother, I Thank You
Mother, I thank you
For the wind isn’t hollow
And the air isn’t dry
And the world isn’t over
And I didn’t die
A gentle breeze blows and tears fill the sky with your heart of compassion
My God am I…
To live with you present in the depths of my soul
Thank you dear mother, my one and my all
Mother, I thank you
’Cause you can’t turn away
When you know that I’m hurting yet I’ve nothing to say
For the mistakes that I’ve made and the pain that I caused
Still my life didn’t end
It just paused…
And yes, I can feel you deep in my soul
In a land that is barren
In a land that is old
The sadness arises
By Lloyd Howell
Note: The following poems originally appeared in the 2010 issue of the Journal of Unification Studies.
Sleepless in Jerusalem
for M, a Jewish friend
Behold, he who keeps Israel will
neither slumber nor sleep. Ps. 121:4
Visiting your ancestral homeland for the first time,
you say that you had the best sleep
of your life –
the kind that only babies have!
I know what you mean but I pray
that you wake quickly
to the facts across town;
where the lines are being redrawn
and homes declared illegal
by bureaucratic fiat
to be bulldozed, without compensation.
no, I mean families;
to be exact, non-Jewish families,
removed by armed soldiers
following faceless orders from above
to soon stand, teeth gnashing,
in utter despair
amid unrecognizable rubble
children screaming, crying
their toys crushed,
their world gone,
now exposed to life’s inequities
at all too young an age.
There on the other side of town
enemies are being made;
yea, mass produced –
a house goes down,
a wall goes up
cutting off the ‘Arabs’ from you
and each other and jobs.
Soon you both will be totally
estranged from each other.
Wake up –
there on the other side [of town]
is having a nightmare,
arm is reaching out
as they are being pulled under by a tide of hate!