This Precious Life

Irises to honor family, friends, birth, death, and the cycles of life.




poignant loss

pain and despair

the edges worn thin

palpable grief hangs in the air

family gathered to honor a daughter

embracing the pain, love, and loss

emotions roiling beneath the surface

some cry, some talk, some retreat

each mourn in their own way

but shared in community

sadness dulls to loss

guilt and joy may visit

gradually space opens

a fresh garden for healing

embracing all they find love

new capacities for living

the grace of community


I recently attended a memorial service for the death of a friend’s daughter who died much too young at 29. It was touching to see the outpouring of love, along side the grief. My friends chose a beautiful way to celebrate their daughter by creating a memorial garden for friends and family to enjoy, remember, and honor her. Death invites us to expand our capacity for loving and living. It reminds me how precious life is and how important that we love our friends and family now.

May love and healing prevail.


78 thoughts on “This Precious Life

  1. This is so relevant, as most of the world has been mourning for so long. I just lost a friend this week , he had lived in South Africa for a few years before moving back home to India last year and you know the state India is in at the moment. Anyway, your piece is beautiful and I think a garden is a lovely way to remember a life. What sadness that such a young life was lost, sending love and strength to the family.

    Stay blessed and keep snapping those shots! ❀

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Profound and beautiful poem, Brad. Today families are losing lives by the dozens and it is really sad to the loved ones grieving for them and at the same time there are some who know that death is a passing transition and they come to terms with the person departing. The flowers are awesome.

    Liked by 8 people

  3. Brad, an unbearable loss for your friend’s family. Your poem captures the essence of the grief and the slow healing ahead with the help of the special garden and ‘the grace of community’. Your post is both beautiful and heartwrenching.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. such a moving and beautiful poem that touches the heart strings deeply. thank you for sharing this brad and for your tender heart honoring the way a soul touches all who love them. it’s interesting i’ve been reflecting on mourning too. it’s a profound time of so much of it across the globe and yet your poem reflects the depths these experiences take us through from loss to opening. thank you. my heart and love goes out to all whom she’s touched.
    p.s. i love the iris photo that reminds me of the irises i painted and have been reflecting upon so much

    Liked by 6 people

  5. Beautiful and deeply thoughtful poem, Brad. Whatever your faith, losing someone close to you is
    pain that goes deep and can alter your thinking.
    It is so very beaut with the creation of a garden. I am sure that was a place of peace and meditation.


    Liked by 7 people

  6. Hello dear Brad, I am so sorry for your loss! I could feel the grief and also the love and hope speaking from your beautiful lines. I especially loved your last lines “Death invites us to expand our capacity for loving and living. It reminds me how precious life is and how important that we love our friends and family now.” Amen to that! Grief has been a big teacher for me. I feel grief to be the other side of love, maybe like a frozen kinda love or so… and when we let go, the love can flow again easier… Sending much love your way!! Big hugs πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—

    Liked by 7 people

  7. So touching, Brad. A remembrance garden is a beautiful gift and a lovely step toward coming to terms with such a sad loss. I agree that death often reminds us to be better, more loving people. Thanks for sharing your elegant poem.

    Liked by 5 people

  8. Sorry for your loss, Brad. A life taken way too early. I thought your poem and tribute was so beautiful and I can feel the emotion. Grief is a very personal process and we all go through it so differently. Sending you lots of love and comfort. Hope that other things are well for you ❀

    Liked by 6 people

  9. Brad,
    Thank you for such a lovely poem/prose. It is sad but beautiful.
    I love celebrations of life it is, I find in the ones that I have attends in the past, more freeing and joyful to remember the person who has passed. The memories are richer, and the tears are happier.
    Since the tears that flowed before were salty and sad.

    A garden with meaning, and symbolism for the family.
    May your heart be lightened as well.

    Liked by 5 people

  10. Twenty Nine Much too young to exit this Earth Realm Brad… My condolences… You paid a beautiful tribute with your poetry my friend… When death strikes unexpected it leaves many emotions to deal with..
    I see now especially how the CYCLE of life held much more meaning to you…
    Much love my friend ❀

    Liked by 4 people

  11. I am deeply saddened by your friend’s loss. A great loss for all her knew her. Twenty-nine is so young. Creating a memorial garden in her honor sounds healing. A beautiful place to visit and reflect on her life. Touching poem and words. πŸ’

    Liked by 3 people

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