What Van Morrison said (from "The Mystery"):
Let go into the mystery
Let yourself go
There is no other place to be
Baby this I know
You've got to dance and sing
And be alive in the mystery
And be joyous and give thanks
And let yourself go
I saw us standing within reach
Of the sun
Let go into the mystery of life
Let go into the mystery
Let yourself go
You've got to open up your arms
To the sun
You know you've got so many charms
It's just begun
Trust what I say and do
What you're told
And surely all your dirt will turn into gold
What I said at my Dad's wake, with a glass of champagne in my hand:
As most of you know, I was adopted by my dad as a newborn. And when I was a little girl he used to tell my about how he knew, when he saw my big blue eyes, that he had found the perfect baby.
So As a little girl I always imagined my Dad wandering in this huge sea of bassinets, kind of a baby supermarket, and him finally, finally, finding and choosing me from the mass of infants. Saying, “yes, we’d like this one please.”
I was probably into my twenties before I realized that it probably didn’t really happen that way.
But Dad always made me feel that way – like he’d chosen the best possible child. He always made me feel safe and loved.
My Dad was a great role model for me of how to live one’s life. He taught me by example about being ethical and honest and fair and compassionate. He loved to laugh and also demonstrated the value of laughing at oneself.
He taught me not to take any wooden nickels, which I never understood, really.
He taught me that when things didn’t work out exactly as planned it was still better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. Most everything is better than that.
Another thing a lot you know is that my Dad was a loyal democrat and a bit of a news junkie. And for a man who liked most people and didn’t have any enemies, he seemed to save his animosity for political figures. He hated tricky Dick Nixon. And was horrified when my grandmother, his mother-in-law, taught my brother and I to chant “Nixon, Nixon, he’s our man, he’ll put Humphrey in the garbage can.” It must have been even worse for him when it turned out to be true.
Towards the end I truly knew he was failing when he stopped complaining about George W.
But I am thankful despite his ailments, he knew who I was until the very end, and that I could tell him how much I loved him, and he could tell me how much he loved me, which is certainly better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.
What some other people said at my Dad's wake:
When Dad went to visit a dying friend, the friend asked my Dad to pour a nice bottle of Irish Whiskey on his grave after he was gone. My Dad reputedly responded "Sure I'll do that Bob, but do you mind if I pass it through my kidney's first?"
"He was compassionate and ethical, a wonderful mentor, and a friend for life."
"I'm a republican. (much laughter) D and I never talked politics. But we never fought about it."
"How many people in this room have had D's pancakes? (3/4 of the room raised their hands) I have the recipe. (It was the one thing my Dad knew how to make.)
"You didn't have to know D long before you knew that you really liked him."
"He loved to sing opera in the car." (also musicals)
"He was all of the brothers favorite brother." (He was the youngest of five boys)
"He was my favorite uncle. He cared about what I had to say."
"He was honest, almost to a fault."
"It was funnier to hear D telling the joke than to hear the punch line." (I think I wrote about this before, but I loved that someone else said it.)
And on another note altogether. things my son said this month:
L: Mom, do you know what's really cool about being a proton?
Me: No, what?
L: You can escape really easily from anything...You could even escape by moving THROUGH something.
Me: Wow. You're right. That is really cool.
L: Mom, what if aliens came to earth, and they had to wear human underwear, and they only had one leg? They would put one leg in one hole and then the other half of their underwear would just be hanging there? Wouldn't that be funny?