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What is Heaven?


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What is Heaven?

I sat and watched
while my husband took his last breath
and escaped his body.
I wondered 
where did he go?
Where will I go when it is my time?

My religion dictates
I believe in an afterlife
and I do.

Is it the mansions of His kingdom?
Did I do enough?
Would I live upstairs or down?
Will I see those
who went before,
will they welcome me?

Or is it simply a resting space
of peace and fulfillment?
I'm leaning this way.

But it doesn't really matter to me now.
While I'm here
I will focus on the moment.
What can I build?
Who can I serve?
What can I leave?
For me the answers to heaven can wait.
                      ~~Judi Van Gorder

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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Judi, picture an inter-dimensional thing. Our experience in this realm seems very limited compared to vast, endless eternity: "spirits in a material world."


Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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  • 4 weeks later...
David W. Parsley

Hi Judi, this is a deeply personal take on a topic that is sometimes relegated to abstract reasoning.  Yet these personal musings are not without the element of Reason.  The poet asserts that it is okay for those views to still be a work in progress while reaching to them for comfort, a sense of continuity.  The narrator, dealing with a detonation of Loss in her immediate vicinity, simultaneously clings to and examines this article of not-quite-baked faith, without relinquishing a sense of ultimate trust that this matter lies in Hands one can touch without understanding.  This Seeker acknowledges the sense of unsatisfied curiosity about the nature of our place in the universes, the durability of our familial constellation, but is not content to allow open topics to distract from the labor at hand, the vision of the path that helps us shape one's individual Heaven.  For this poet, it cannot be said that "parting is all we know of Heaven."  (Even Emily doesn't know everything!)

I do not know when the event that occasions this poem occurred.  But that doesn't matter.  Once experienced, such loss is always immediate.  Please accept my compliments on one of your most revealing and skillful poems; condolences for your abiding loss.

In My Thoughts and Prayers,
 - David

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Hi Tony, Badge and David,   Thank you for your thoughtful comments and comfort.  I'm working at reconnecting with the writing world while still transitioning from wife and business owner to widow and retiree.   It has been 6 months now from the end of one life and the beginning of a new one and I still haven't figured out what I want to be when I grow up. It has been a very busy time and I'm still working on entirely shutting down my business and finalizing legal transactions regarding adjustments to my Trust and Will.  But that is just busy work.   I do know I want to continue to write, I just haven't found my rhythm yet.

I will be more active here in time.  Just keep posting your work here and I will catch up eventually. 


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~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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I thought that Judi will explore philosophically but explore you did amidst the pain of loss. What can a mortal now left behind do to move forward is the thesis of the poem.  To be religious and Biblical about it, for Christians who accept Jesus, he promised to bring back the dead loved ones alive back as humans to be with us again. (John 5: 28, 29) That thought of reunion inspires hope.

"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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