Sorting through some old files today I came across this poem, written by my dear friend and colleague Rhonda Watson. Rhonda died of Motor Neurone Disease in 2011. I’m not sure when she wrote this poem, but the file I have is dated March 2009. I don’t know whether Rhonda ever published this in another location, but I know it’s too good to let it languish quietly in a forgotten computer folder.

To live as if

Rhonda Watson

To rush headlong with courage
Fists clenched and without fear

To laugh out loud, and whistle
In the dark and in the cold

To stop, and lean, and listen
For the whisper of a word

To look full faced at
One another, smiling all the while

To weep and bend with sorrow
In the face of all that’s wrong

To walk, and trudge, and stumble
On a rough and lonely road

To speak out loud with joy
The deep murmurs of the heart

To dare to think and ask
At an answer’s hollow ring

To stand astride, feet planted
When safety offers ease

To shout, and yell, and name it
When the anger’s rightly stirred

To wait, eyes straining far off
For the coming of the day

To hear and dance sure-footed
When the music is from home

To live as if I mean it
That the end is promised, sure

To live as if my brother
Is the lord of earth and heav’n

To rest in my own Father’s love
When my heart feels cold and dry

To live as if,

I’m not afraid

To live

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