Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Wealth, an Inside Job

With my great-grandson, Damian, 
when he was small

There were years when I thought
I would be happy if, for once,
I had a new couch,
instead of the used ones I had
made do with all my life.
When I finally got one -
it was just a couch.
It came, it went,
like all the others.

I spent many years
collecting shelves of books,
a whole wall full.
Now that I live in one room,
I am constantly purging
both shelves and closet,
getting rid of all
I once had gathered,
to create space.

Doing hospice work,
I saw what life boils down to.
In the end, one needs only
toothbrush and comb,
set on the small cabinet
beside one's hospital bed.
I gazed at the photos
beside the beds in palliative care,
showing the full lives
the people had lived,
the houses, dining room sets, good china,
knick-knacks they had treasured,
all long gone,
or soon to be givern away,
or taken to the dump.
Their real wealth, the smiling faces
in the photos of the families
they had cherished.

We take with us
only what we accumulate
in spirit, our soul's growth,
the stories and memories we have made,
and the legacy we leave behind us:
our children, grandchildren,
our true wealth on this earth.

for Sumana's prompt at Midweek Motif: Wealth


  1. Oh, Sherry, life fills and empties, and love is all to all. Thank you.

  2. Oh Sherry this is so utterly true! What a huge message indeed these lines hold. This is beautiful and mighty all rolled into one! I want to hang this on my wall as a reminder in my day to day life.

  3. Oh Sherry this is such a heartwarming write❤️especially adore "We take with us only what we accumulate in spirit, our soul's growth, the stories and memories we have made" sigh..❤️ Beautifully penned.

    Lots of love,

  4. As someone, who experienced, what it means to be homeless, and living, in a shelter, Sherry, you have captured this, dead-on.

  5. What a bitter truth this is as I survey a thousand books around me and still I buy more! Perhaps when I'm gone someone will come in and say "Did he really read all of these" but wont hear me answer "Yes!"

  6. Soberingly true.Thank you for reminding us.

  7. It's true ... your poem is deeply profound Sherry. Sometimes we completely forget what really matters. Beautiful.

  8. Beautiful words and so true The ones close to us are our biggest treasure

  9. enchanting beautiful words enriched with delightful feelings .loved it
    you have a lovely place dear

  10. Lovely thoughtful post, Sherry. k.

  11. You leave many riches for us all already.. the hospice scene made me shudder..far too many in any sort of hospital have any photos - let alone visits

  12. Beautiful writing. And beautiful you doing hospice work.

  13. Yes, Sherry, we DO take with us only what we accumulate in spirit & our memories. All worldly goods are so trivial in comparison!! You ARE a wise woman.

  14. Thank you for the wisdom in this poem, Sherry. An old friend of mine is fond of saying, "They don't make pockets in shrouds." I think your poem illuminates that saying.

  15. I couldn't agree more with your message.

  16. A wise poem from a wise and caring person.

  17. Their real wealth, the smiling faces
    in the photos of the families
    they had cherished.

    A poignant revelation of the reality of life. What matters most are the wonderful presence of the loved ones.Other material things are of no consequence. Very true Sherry!


  18. So true. We take nothing with us but the love. Dropping by after a long time and enjoying every word you write.

  19. And ne'er were truer words spoken, Sherry... We realise this as we grow older and wiser!


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Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!