This is dedicated to Ms. Claire Ivy Moseley who was eulogized today at First Presbyterian Church in West Point, Mississippi. Her daughters, Kay and Judy, were childhood friends, and I have wonderful memories of a delightful lady who was always sitting in “her pew” every time the doors of the church were open.
As I looked around the sanctuary, I stepped back in time to remember all the times of my life spent in that very room. I was married there, my mother’s funeral was held there, Olivia Catledge Portera and I became blood sisters there and although Judy will deny it vehemently, she taught me my first “cuss word” there.
In her defense, she may not have realized it was a “cuss word” but when I asked my mother that night what the word meant, she made me go to bed without supper. It was worse when Daddy got home, and I got the very last spanking of my life.
Funny, many of the pews were occupied by the offspring of the parents, now gone, who occupied them a half century ago. Olivia and Dunlap sat right behind me the way they always did with the late Homer and Avis Catledge. The Hazards were just across the aisle. There was something strangely comforting about the atmosphere in that room today.
I ran across a poem believed penned in 1993 by David M. Romano. I hope you find it as heart-warming as I did.
“When Tomorrow Starts Without Me”
When tomorrow starts without me, and I’m not there to see.
If the sun should rise and find your eyes, all filled with tears for me.
I wish so much you wouldn’t cry, the way you did today,
While thinking of the many things we never got to say.
I know how much you love me, as much as I love you..
And each time that you think of me, I know you’ll miss me too..
But when tomorrow starts without me, Please try to understand..
An angel came and called my name and took me by the hand,
It seemed my place was ready – In Heaven far above,
and that I’d have to leave behind, those things I dearly love..
But as I turned to walk away, a tear fell from my eye.
For all of life, I’d always thought, I didn’t want to die.
I had so much to live for, so much yet to do,
It seemed almost impossible, that I was leaving you..
I thought of all the yesterdays, the good ones and the bad..
I thought of all the love we shared, and how much fun we had..
If I could relive yesterday, just even for a while,
I’d say goodbye, then kiss you ‘til I saw that special smile..
But then I fully realized, that it could never be,
‘Cause emptiness and memories, would take the place of me.
And when I thought of all those things, I might miss come tomorrow,
I thought of you, and when I did, my heart was filled with sorrow. .
But when I walked through Heaven’s gates, I felt so much at home.
When God looked down and smiled at me, From his great & golden throne,
He said, “This is eternity, and all I’ve promised you.
Today your life on Earth is past, but here it starts anew.
I promise no tomorrow, but today will always last,
and since each day is the same day, there’s no longing for the past. .
But you have been so faithful, so trusting and so true,
Though there were some times you did some things you shouldn’t do. .
But you have been forgiven, and now at last you’re free,
So come and take me by the hand, and share my life with me..
So when tomorrow starts without me, don’t think we’re far apart,
for every time you think of me, I’ll be right there – in your Heart..