Sunday, December 02, 2007

When I'm Gone

I was digging around in some papers and found the handout for my grandfathers memorial service. Inside the front cover there was this poem written by Mrs.Lyman Hancock.

When I come to the end of my journey
And I travel my last weary mile
Just forget if you can, that I ever frowned
And remember only the smile

Forget unkind words I have spoken
Remember some good I have done
Forget that I ever had heartache
And remember I've had loads of fun

Forget that I've stumbled and blundered
And sometimes fell by the way
Remember I have fought some hard battles
And won, ere the close of the day

Then forget to grieve for my going
I would not have you sad for a day
But in summer just gather some flowers
And remember the place where I lay

And come in the shade of evening
When the sun paints the sky in the west
Stand for a few moments beside me
And remember only my best

My grandfather was not always the nicest man. There was a rift within his family about somethings that happened fifty or sixty years ago and there were a lot of hurt feelings. He also did some things to his own family throughout the years that have caused some great emotional distress.

My personal relationship with my grandfather was much different than other people have experienced with him. I never remember him ever speaking harshly towards me or ever saying a negative thing about anyone. He always loved me and he always wanted to spend time with me. I miss my grandfather. I miss playing cards with him. I miss hearing his jokes and stories. And it's sad really. All I have left of him is the memories. The pictures.

He was a farmer in Iowa. He died about thirty miles from where he was born. In fact he never lived more than about thirty or forty miles from where he was born. He did travel the country quite a bit. Taking vacations and for a few years after he retired grandma and him would travel to Texas for the winters. They liked to go to dances together. In fact that is where they first met sixty some years ago, at a dance. They would have been married sixty years next July. July 23, 1948 is when they were married.

He was a Christmas baby. Born December 25, 1929. He would have been 78 this year.

I have some good memories of him and I will remember them every time I think of him.


Samuel said...

you had me in tears.. This is my favorite blog you have done.. You can me crying
Love ya

One Observationist said...

Thanks Shar. Every time I read the poem I tear up a little bit. In the spring I am going to do what the poem asks. I am going to take some flowers to his grave as the sun is setting and stand by him for a while and remember the good times we had.

Love you guys.

Anonymous said...

The author of the poem is my grandmother, Mrs. Lyman Hancock (Abbie). I have the original poem and I was astonished to see this poem widespread on the internet. It certainly makes me proud & happy that so many people find this poem comforting. You have my condolences for your loss. May God Bless you & your family!
Salinda (Hancock) Jansson

One Observationist said...


The poem speaks volumes to me. It is beautiful and touches the heart.

Your grandmother must have been a fascinating woman. I would have liked to have met her.

Jeremy Divis

Anonymous said...

Abbie's poem was included on a memorial bookmark provided to our family after the services for my Mother, Dorothea Hancock.

When I saw who wrote these beautiful words I could only hope that somehow, somewhere in the past that our families were in some small way, related. Her words spoke directly to the heart and soul of our grieving family and for that we are very grateful.

David Grant Hancock

sarah craycraft said...

Such a moving piece of writing.

This comment is for Salinda Hancock (hope she sees it!). My student loves this poem, and is hoping to perform it in a speaking competition. However, she needs author permission. Would you be able to grant this to us, since it was written by your grandmother?