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Maddie’s Elegy is Sung too Soon  

Lament

O, no:  the phone call no parent wants to get

Woe, the shock that follows –

Thudding heart stops and begins

and questions and knows this was too-too soon.

So much to say, to plan, to do.

What we’re planning now we don’t want to.

What we want to believe, well, we doubt everything.

Where do we find the strength to hope for peace?

 

Praise

Outside.  Maddie loved being outside,

So here we gather to watch the young ones

Swim.  Run.  Bike.  Kick a soccer ball.

Maddie loved to play water polo,

Kicking hard underwater, flashing a smile above it

Making a perfect pass, celebrating the score,

High-fiving friends - everyone’s favorite teammate.

Maddie loved coaching: waterproofing little swimmers,

Inventing games as snowflakes kissed her cheeks,

Sharing her love of sports, her love of the outdoors.

 

Consolation

She grew up with morning swims in San Ramon

She chased the powder in Western Washington.

Here we remember her competitive fire and grace. 

The victory laps and wet hugs, warm hugs with her family.

This bench is for her, for all of us

Who want to rest for a minute,

Dry off our teary drops of water

And remember her smile and her battles in this pool.

Watch the light on the lap lanes

Ripple with the whisper of her laughter on the water.

 

 

Jenyth Jo Gearhart-Utchen

August 23, 2019

 

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