Soft as the voice of an angel
breathing a lesson unheard;
Hope, with a gentle persuasion
Whispers a comforting word.
“Wait till the darkness is over,
Wait till the tempest is gone.
Hope for a brighter tomorrow,
After the shower is gone.”
Whispering Hope, o how welcome thy voice! Making my heart in its sorrow rejoice.
(some versions say after the ‘darkness’ is gone.)
The past week has been spent saying good-bye to our Uncle Buzz. It’s no insult to anyone to say that he and Aunt Lee have been stand-in parents and grandparents for us when we have lived far away from our own. And for that we treasure them. He was 83 and died as peacefully as you could pray for. The phrase from the Bible that says “…that you sorrow not, as those who have no hope” we don’t sorrow without hope, but we sorrow! There are tears and chatter and regrets and sympathies and above all, Comfort! Death is a mystery. It is at once profound and common.
Babikow family funerals are unique in a sense, because of the family business. Business associates are friends , even if they are competitors, or have been. There is healthy respect for someone who has strived to do well and treat others with respect, even if you don’t always agree. This is also a generational business , (not so much the same local business but the same kind of growing and selling plants, Buzz being the third. His grandfather’s business still operates ) .Uncle Buzz took a long shot and hired a bunch of 20-something’s (and younger who were his kids and nephews and nieces) who didn’t know much about the greenhouse business but were interested and willing to learn. I think almost all of them started by driving a truck! They showed up at his funeral 20 years after he retired. I think we would have been surprised if they hadn’t! Maybe I underestimate people but I find this very touching. So if any of yooz read this, thank you! 😋Working at the Greenhouse
We thought when they took Uncle Buzz off the ventilator he would stop breathing within the hour. He breathed for two more days. It gave us a little time to get used to the fact. Not much. I can’t believe I had lunch with them a week and a half ago and they put his body in the ground yesterday. And that when I walk into their apartment, I’ll see only Aunt Lee. I told Joel that my head is still swimmy. He said his is too.
The song I quoted at the top is a favorite of theirs that we sang at the funeral. I had heard of it but had not heard it in decades. It was such a pleasure to discover it. Whenever I listen to the YouTube video I posted onFB , I want to say “Lassie! Here Lassie!” So if you can’t get past that sound of a former era, read the words straight through in your head. They are very sweet.