Peggy: Brave Heart

A friend of mine died last May.
She knew she was dying and every breath
she forced from her battered lungs
only brought her closer to the end.

She was always there for her friends
And always willing to talk
And make your tears go away
By replacing the pain in your heart
With some of her joy.

In the end, I think it was her courage to share
That brought her end more quickly.
But being her, she could do no less.
Five feet tall, 86 pounds of wasted body.

I wonder if I would have the courage
To pour myself out so freely.
I wonder if I would hoard my breath
Or use it to laugh and make others laugh.

I wonder if I would ever have such courage.
I wonder if I would have so much love.

Peggie in Better Days taken by a friend

Peggie in Better Days taken by a friend

33 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Myrna Rosa
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 18:33:54

    My condolences. Peggy certainly lived and died courageously. It takes courage to love.

    Reply

  2. Rall
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 18:50:20

    How lucky you were to have such a friend. I am so sorry for your loss. The message for me is to appreciate a person like this while they are still alive. Too often it takes a death for real appreciation to sink in.

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:41:57

      I am glad that before she died, she knew how much I loved her and thought she was the “cat’s meow” as she woud sometimes laughingly comment and used as a tagline on her blog. And it is true, let people know. One day they are here, the next they are beyond our touch.

      Reply

  3. The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 19:48:46

    I miss her. And Bill. Love to you my friend. ❤

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Jan 27, 2016 @ 19:54:13

      Bill was such a wonderful gentleman. I miss him so much. Peggie was so special to me. I think the shortest conversation was a week before she died – four hours. Her beloved Ella and Elby were adopted by friends and are well and loved.

      Reply

  4. Let's CUT the Crap!
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 19:59:39

    ❤ ❤ ❤
    The pillow she had shipped to me felt all lumpy this weekend. I took it apart and found the gel pack inside was bunched. I fixed it, zipped it up and remembered again she'd gone to the post office to courier it out. I had no idea at the time how much physical energy this took for her.
    Thanks for the memories, Kanzen. ❤

    Reply

  5. Hannah Gosselin
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 20:11:58

    This brings tears…reminds me so much of a friend that we lost…she was always smiling.

    This:

    “replacing the pain in your heart
    With some of her joy.”

    Beautiful write, Toni.

    Reply

  6. Victoria C. Slotto
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 20:54:34

    You made me feel your loss, and also brought to mind how many I’ve seen struggle with COPD and how very hard it is to go through and to witness.

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:40:01

      I have lost three people whom I loved this past year to COPD. So cruel a disease. We can heal so much. In my heart there is bitterness that we cannot heal this.

      Reply

  7. Mary
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:05:12

    I know you have written about Peggy before; and I think it is very special that you honor her with this poem. I do understand that kind of courage…that it wasn’t easy for her…that she was a good friend until the end!

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:38:54

      I miss her everyday because everyday, I have things to tell her…I started a journal: Things I want to say to Peggie. Even in heaven, she shares my amazement.

      Reply

  8. thefeatheredsleep
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:23:01

    Extremely moving I felt this. A beautiful testimony of her life♡

    Reply

  9. Luk Lei
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 21:58:41

    Beautifully expressed. Moving.

    Reply

  10. Sherry Blue SKY
    Jan 27, 2016 @ 23:11:20

    The courage of the dying always blows me away, for the reason stated in your closing line….to have that much love. She sounds like an amazing woman. I loved this poem. She was a heroic 86 pounds.

    Reply

  11. Sanaa Rizvi
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 05:46:46

    I m soo sorry for your loss Toni, please accept my deepest condolences.. this is a very touching tribute to her. Big hugs to you.

    Reply

  12. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 06:31:28

    Oh I do remember the haiku you wrote for her… a perfect legacy, maybe we all have more courage inside than we think…. but still we can just admire such braveness

    Reply

  13. Jae Rose
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 09:02:38

    What a wonderful and honest tribute – some people have so much courage in the face of adversity..it is to be respected

    Reply

  14. magicalmysticalteacher
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 11:37:35

    Most of us have more courage than we are aware of. Sometimes, tragically, it takes a devastating situation to bring that courage into the light.

    Reply

    • kanzensakura
      Jan 28, 2016 @ 14:58:22

      I am grateful I sensed her bravery and open heart at the beginning and that we became friends. And we do have more inside of us than we realize, until we have to.

      Reply

  15. Snakypoet (Rosemary Nissen-Wade)
    Jan 28, 2016 @ 23:30:01

    I think that much love and courage is rare indeed!

    Reply

  16. Sumana Roy
    Jan 29, 2016 @ 01:40:36

    this is such a moving poem Toni…so sorry for your loss…it’s devastating to lose a true friend who always brought joy into others’ life…you’ve beautifully honored this brave soul….

    Reply

  17. writersdream9
    Jan 29, 2016 @ 08:02:05

    She certainly is the epitome of courage. Touched me deeply!

    Reply

  18. Anonymous
    Feb 07, 2016 @ 01:43:08

    Victoria Scptt? This was someone Peg mentioned in our high school days…

    Reply

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