The time of concern is over.
No longer are we asked how we’re doing.
Rarely are their names mentioned anymore.
For most, the drama is over.
There are exceptions: close and compassionate friends, sensitive and loving family.
Still look, still ask, still listen. Thank God for them.
What can be said, you ask?
Please say their names.
Love does not die.
Their names are written on our lives.
The sound of their voices replay within our minds.
You may feel they are dead.
We feel they are dead, and still they live.
They ghost-walk our souls, beckoning in future welcome.
You say they were our friends. We say they are.
Please say their names to us.
It hurts to bury their memories in silence.
What they were in flesh is no longer with us.
What they are in spirit stirs within us always.
Please understand we cannot forget.
We would not even if we could.
We know that you cannot know.
Yesterday we were like you.
We do not ask you to walk this road.
The ascent is steep and the burden heavy.
We walk it not by choice.
What we have lost you cannot feel.
What we have gained, you may not see.
Please say their names, for they are alive.
We will meet them again, although in many ways we’ve never parted.
Their spirits play light songs; appear in sunrises and sunsets.
They are real and shadow; they were and are.
Please say their names to us, and say their names again.
They are our friends, and we love them as we always did.
More each day.
Please, say their names!