Everyone likes to have a second chance. And most of the time a second chance is there to be had. Except in the case of death. If we have things we know we should say to someone, yet we haven’t said them—because of pride, because we’re just so busy, or because there’s friction in the relationship—we need to wake up. We need to act. No one knows the day of death.
But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven,] but My Father only. –Matthew 24:36
We may never get a second chance to tell someone we’re sorry, or that we love them and always have. We may never get a second chance to say thank you to someone who changed our lives.
We have only today. The past is over, and tomorrow may never come. Let’s not waste time with unimportant things. Let’s run to those we love. And let’s do it today.
When Great Trees Fall
by Maya Angelou
When great trees fall, rocks on distant hills shudder, lions hunker down in tall grasses, and even elephants lumber after safety.
When great trees fall in forests, small things recoil into silence, their senses eroded beyond fear.
When great souls die, the air around us becomes light, rare, sterile. We breathe, briefly. Our eyes, briefly, see with a hurtful clarity. Our memory, suddenly sharpened, examines, gnaws on kind words unsaid, promised walks never taken.
Great souls die and our reality, bound to them, takes leave of us. Our souls, dependent upon their nurture, now shrink, wizened. Our minds, formed and informed by their radiance, fall away. We are not so much maddened as reduced to the unutterable ignorance of dark, cold caves.
And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms, slowly and always irregularly. Spaces fill with a kind of soothing electric vibration. Our senses, restored, never to be the same, whisper to us. They existed. They existed. We can be. Be and be better. For they existed.