Life Talk

Grief and Joy


 by Louise Bates


With laughter, song, and courage he met the world

Fearless, great-hearted, and strong.

Never hesitated to help anyone in need

Despised meanness and cruelty.

He worked hard his entire life without complaint

To take care of his own, and others too.


A single life can touch so many

Bring hope, give inspiration, share joy.

Like ripples in a pond

Radiating from a single tossed pebble

The goodness of one man’s quiet life

Has spread – and keeps spreading.


He is gone, but his legacy endures

Love, faithfulness, compassion

Kindness, hard work, music

And laughter – always laughter.

In the hearts of all who knew him

Who he was lives on.


We buried my grandfather this morning. It’s been a rough few days. Thank you, everyone who offered condolences and comfort (and poetic assistance) on Twitter.

(Seriously, the above poem (which was printed on the hand-out at Grandpa’s calling hours) would not have been written without help from my Tweeps.)

Many times this past week I’ve said that I don’t mind getting older myself, but I really wish my grandparents’ generation would stop aging. I’m never ready to say goodbye.

The grief has hit me oddly this time around. I’ve not been extremely emotional, just tired. So, so tired. I’m not sure how much posting I’ll be doing in the next few weeks. With holidays coming and more traveling planned for immediately afterward, I’m not sure when my creative well will get a chance to be refilled. I had been participating in the #nerdlution (check it out on Twitter) before all this happened, and I hope to get back to my goal of 30 minutes of creative writing a day soon. Maybe when we get home (and unpacked, and laundry washed, and Christmas tree set up and decorated) I’ll be able to get going with that again.

In the meantime, thanks again for your friendship, and your patience while I’m sporadic with social media.

Malcolm W Bates, September 7, 1925-December 5, 2013
Malcolm W Bates, September 7, 1925-December 5, 2013
Baby Joy with her Great-Grandpa, 2007
Baby Joy with her Great-Grandpa, 2007

4 thoughts on “Grief and Joy”

    1. Thanks, Connie. It is slowly hitting me – in drips and drops – that he’s really gone. He’s been such a solid part of my life ever since I was a baby. It just doesn’t seem possible that we aren’t going to go visit him when we go back up in January, or that I won’t be sending him a Christmas card this year. So strange.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s