Monday, July 8, 2013

Unk- Quiet, Gentle & Kind


 To say today was exceptionally challenging would be an understatement.  Each of us said goodbye to a portion of our heart...some more than others.  

     Raymond, Ray, Unk, Unk the Great.  Those were just a few of the names Ben's uncle acquired during his 77 years here on earth...and I can't believe it's been over 2 weeks since his passing.  Every time I pull onto the family property and behind the big house, I expect to see him outside doing some type of yard work.  It was an unexpected passing and it's jolted each and every one of us. 

   I was blown away when Unk's wife, Arlene, asked me to do a reading at his funeral.  What an honor to be able to speak at such an amazing man's end of life service.  Of everything he has accomplished, I felt out of place being the person chosen to pass along the following message:

{Go placidly amid the noise & haste & remember, what peace there may be in silence.  As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.  Speak your truth quietly & clearly; and listen to others, even the dull & ignorant; they too have their story.  Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.  If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain & bitter; for always there will be greater & lesser persons than yourself.  Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.  Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.  Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.  But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself.  Especially, do not feign affection.  Neither cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity & disenchantment it is perennial as the grass.  Take kindly the counsel of the years,  gracefully surrendering the things of youth.  Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.  But do not distress yourself with imaginings.  Many fears are born of fatigue & loneliness.  Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.    You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees & the stars; you have a right to be here.  And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.  Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever  your labors & aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.  With all its sham, drudgery & broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.  Be cheerful  Strive to be happy.}

       Doting husband & magnificent uncle; our very own animal whisperer.

Unk & Hannah; touring the property

Unk & Mai-Tai
Arlene & Unk

Ray, Marna & Herb, Tabitha
Ben's Uncle, Mom, Dad & sister


  1. I am so sad to hear about Cousin Ray. I love that you read The Desiderata at his service. I have been reading that prayer daily for many years.

  2. Ah-ha! There is a name for the poem I read!! I love it...and what I loved even more, is that I was chosen to present it to the room full of family & friends that were there to remember Ray <3