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How Do You Say Goodbye

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Below is the poem entitled How Do You Say Goodbye which was written by poet Robert L. Hinshaw. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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How Do You Say Goodbye

I must hasten to Cecil's bedside ere it is too late,
To say goodbye to my brother who lies in a perilous state.
Lord, I pray for soothing words as he begins his eternal bourne,
To be welcomed by You when from these earthly bonds he's shorn.

Should I reminisce about the good times when life was more sublime,
Growing up in The Great Depression when we scarcely had a dime?
Should I mention how thankful we were for our Godly Mother and Dad,
Who directed us to Your paths and saw that we were fed and clad?

Should I salute him and thank him for his heroic service to this nation,
And to defend our precious freedoms, he bravely fulfilled that obligation?
Should I remind him that as a Peacemaker he'll be an honored son,
By You Who'll place a crown upon his brow when that final race is won?

Should I remind him that he faithfully served Your people while on earth,
As a Minister of the Gospel and for this, of Your praise there'll be no dearth?
Should I remind him of his love for family and how very much he sacrified,
And what a glorious moment when he reaches out to touch the Face of Christ?

Or, would it be best if I kissed him upon his brow and simply held his hands,
And whispered in his ear, "It's OK, Cecil!  Let go!  Your family understands!"
Lord, I pray for the right things to do and say as he begins his eternal bourne.
Please enfold him in Thy loving arms when from these earthly bonds he's shorn!

Robert L. Hinshaw, CMSgt, USAF, Retired
© All Rights Reserved

In honor of my brother, Cecil Bernard Hinshaw, who has terminal cancer.

Copyright © Robert L. Hinshaw

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  1. Date: 8/16/2012 10:06:00 PM
    I'm sorry to hear about your brother and the state he's in. Reading this reminded me of my late grandmother who suffered for six months until she passed in May of 1979. Another fine write, Bob

  1. Date: 8/12/2012 7:10:00 PM
    It seems to be that you are having more than your share of worry and sadness. And yet, in so many ways, you continue to cheer the rest of us, and we can learn by your example to be even kinder and gracious to one another. I'm so sorry for these difficulties, Bob. Prayers for you, our friend.

  1. Date: 8/7/2012 6:57:00 PM
    This is beautiful - it made me cry. I think that the hardest time to say goodbye is - when you know that they are not coming back. I am sure that God will have a special place for your brother. Lucilla

  1. Date: 8/5/2012 10:39:00 PM
    This is a loving tribute for your brother. I hope his passage will be peaceful and in time, you will only have the good memories of your brother. Take care, sending my sincere love and wishes. Lee

  1. Date: 7/30/2012 3:50:00 PM
    When the time comes you will know just what to say. I'm sorry to hear you have a love one so ill. When God Takes him home what a journey that will be. The holy angels will carry him across the great Jordan. I'll be praying that God will give you the right things to say. God bless you my dear friend.

  1. Date: 7/30/2012 2:42:00 PM
    This is a most precious write, Robert. so sorry for what has happened in your family. He had to be one awesome man. By the way, thanks for letting me know my sonnet was being featured. LUv, Andrea

  1. Date: 7/27/2012 11:07:00 PM
    Wonderful..its just what I needed..BG

  1. Date: 7/26/2012 6:55:00 PM
    Dear Bob, may strenght be with you and your family through this difficult time. Never say goodbye for he will live on in your hearts forever. Hugs

  1. Date: 7/24/2012 6:42:00 AM
    Dear Bob - My thoughts on reading your loving poem are that whatever you say, he will hear it and feel it. Don't say anything at all and he'll know it. I am so sorry he has to leave you in grief but it sounds as though you each know there is something great to come. I'll keep you in my prayers. love, Kathy

  1. Date: 7/24/2012 2:01:00 AM
    My prayers are for you and yours dear poet. As for your query in this Title....your fifth stanza seems warm and filled with love, and I hope I am sent off this way dear sir when it's my turn to smell my last. Hang in there soldier. (My greatest respect for you CMSgt !) May your days be filled with strength Robert ! Have a blessed week my friend....much love, james

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 4:13:00 PM
    bob, i've been wondering where you've been and now i know. i'm so sorry about your brother, but you've done him proud with this very touching and beautiful write.

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 2:04:00 PM
    Bob, it happened to my father, only difference is he was 61, never saw retirement, he wanted to go, and to this day I will always believe he looked happy moments before he went, take care Bob...Dave

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 11:39:00 AM
    Bob, magnificent write, a wondeful dedication to your brother in these obviously very difficult times, a decision to be given lots of thought, my thoughts and prayers are with yours and his of luck..David

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 9:45:00 AM
    Robert, so sorry for the departure of your brother. Life is nothing you just have to take heart and take good care of the rest family members. You have written a good poem about your brother's life. The Lord will give him a place in His kingdom.

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 3:04:00 AM
    Bob H., this is a hard subject... I'm not one to handle goodbyes... love your verse...pd

  1. Date: 7/22/2012 3:02:00 AM
    A moving piece in honor of your brother Bob.. It is never easy to say goodbye.. Wishing you and the rest of your family peace in this difficult time. Love and a blessed Sunday to you ;) Wilma

  1. Date: 7/21/2012 11:21:00 PM
    Robert,...I am stirred to the depths of my soul to read this spirited query of how to react at your dear brother's bedside...somehow I know that with your Christian like sensitivity, u have shared all these important things already over the years. The loving arms of our Lord are outstretched and ready to receive him...I just know that u were an incredible brother and friend! I held off emailing while u were traveling...sending kindest regards to u and Vera while u are on the road traveling...gwendolen

  1. Date: 7/21/2012 9:14:00 PM
    oh Bob so sorry to learn of your brother's health issue .. a tunning tribute u wrote in his honor my friend amid all the tragedy your beautiful State is enduring once again from the horror of the movie massacre.. our hearts and prayers are with u and family for Cecil and for Colorado.. tragedy kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkbrings people closer .. suffering and loss make one understand how precious life is.. we will light a candle for Cecil and Aurora..

  1. Date: 7/21/2012 8:11:00 PM
    got a poem HEAVEN,think you should read,think it will give a little comfort,thanks for the comment,heart felt Robert

  1. Date: 7/21/2012 7:38:00 PM
    sad write Robert,sank my heart,my friend a 20 year old footballer recently found out he has cancer in his leg,not taking it well