Randy McCormick Shares a Poem For Every Morgue Door

August 28, 2009
Advertisement

image I feel this poem should be posted on the outside of every morgue door. Each withered and wasted old human being we encounter speaks through these words. Although I am long past the days of making arrangements, this commentary on old age touched me. I wish I had read this poem when I was active in the trenches, just to remind me daily of the journey of life. When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home in North Platte , Nebraska, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value. Later, when the nurses were going through his meagre possessions, they found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital.

One nurse took her copy to Missouri.. The old man’s sole bequest to posterity has since appeared in the Christmas edition of the News Magazine of the St. Louis Association for Mental Health. A slide presentation has also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem.

And this little old man, with nothing left to give to the world, is now the author of this ‘anonymous’ poem winging across the Internet.

Advertisement

Crabby Old Man

What do you see nurses? ………..What do you see?

What are you thinking…………when you’re looking at me?

A crabby old man ………. not very wise,

Uncertain of habit……….with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles his food……….and makes no reply.

When you say in a loud voice………. ‘I do wish you’d try!’

Who seems not to notice…………the things that you do

And forever is losing………..A sock or shoe?

Who, resisting or not……….lets you do as you will,

With bathing and feeding……….The long day to fill?

Is that what you’re thinking? ……….Is that what you see?

Then open your eyes ,……….you’re not looking at me.

Do you know who I am…………as I sit here so still,

As I do all your bidding……….as I eat at your will.

I’m a small child of Ten………..with a father and mother,

Brothers and sisters…………who love one another

A young boy of Sixteen……….with wings on his feet

Dreaming that soon now………..a lover I’ll meet.

A groom soon at Twenty………..my heart gives a leap

Remembering, the vows………..that I promised to keep.

At Twenty-Five, now………….I have young of my own

Who need me to guide………. a secure happy home.

A man now of Thirty…………My young have grown fast,

Bound to each other……….With ties that should last.

At Forty, my young sons…………have grown and are gone,

But my woman’s beside me……….to see I don’t mourn.

At Fifty, once more……….Babies play ‘ round my knee,

Again, we know children…………My loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me………..My wife is now dead.

I look at the future…………I shudder with dread.

For my young are all rearing……….young of their own

And I think of the years………..and the love that I’ve known.

I’m now an old man………….and nature is cruel

Tis jest to make old age…………look like a fool.

The body, it crumbles……….grace and vigor, depart

There is now a stone……….where I once had a heart

But inside this old carcass………..a young man still dwells,

And now and again……….my battered heart swells

I remember the joys…………I remember the pain.

And I’m loving and living………..life over again

I think of the years . all too few……….gone too fast.

And accept the stark fact……….that nothing can last

Not a crabby old man . Look closer………..see……….ME!!

Remember this poem when you next meet an older person who you might brush aside without looking at the young soul within. In the morgue, you are preparing that ?old face? for viewing, ponder on their life to better understand yours. We will all, one day, be there, too!

CDFuneralNews

CDFuneralNews

ConnectingDirectors.com is the leading online daily publication for funeral professionals with a reader base of over 45,000 of the most elite and forward-thinking professionals in the profession. With ConnectingDirectors.com we have created a global community through an online platform allowing funeral professionals to Stay Current. Stay Informed and Stay Elite.
CDFuneralNews
Advertisement

You may be interested

10 Visionary Death Care Entrepreneurs Revolutionizing How We Die
Funeral Industry News
6 views
Funeral Industry News
6 views

10 Visionary Death Care Entrepreneurs Revolutionizing How We Die

Justin Crowe - June 20, 2018

Looking at the business that these 10 death care entrepreneurs have created, there is an overwhelming sense of certainty that…

Mean Internet Comments – Funeral Edition
Funeral Industry News
509 views
Funeral Industry News
509 views

Mean Internet Comments – Funeral Edition

CDFuneralNews - June 20, 2018

We shine a light on some of the harsh words posted on social media towards DISRUPT Media's CEO, Ryan Thogmartin.…

FTC Releases Results of Undercover Funeral Rule Investigation… 4 Regions Bombed
Funeral Industry News
1180 views
Funeral Industry News
1180 views

FTC Releases Results of Undercover Funeral Rule Investigation… 4 Regions Bombed

Justin Crowe - June 18, 2018

The FTC has released its report detailing the results of its undercover Funeral Rule investigation for 2017. Last year, the…

Comments