He is Gone

By Deborah Mulligan


Rory had just turned 19 when he died of bone cancer. 
This poem was read at Rory's funeral - written and spoken by his mother.

Do not come to our house
He will not answer the door
There is no laughter here
He is gone

Close the door to his bedroom
It is not as it seems
The clothes are abandoned shells
He is gone

Do not sit at his bedside
There is no hand to hold or caress
The cold vacant bed longs for the warmth of his body
He is gone

Do not set him a place at the table
His seat is a silent sentinel
No food shall be served
He is gone

Do not speak to our dog
Her faithful companionship is at an end
She will not understand the emptiness of the couch where he lay
He is gone

Do not tell the long, sleepless hours of the night
There are no restless sounds of crutches in the hall
No solitary light shall burn in the darkness
He is gone

Do not strum his lifeless guitar
It sits gently weeping in the corner
All music has ceased
He is gone

Do not scream to the universe
About a joyous life that held such promise
A journey ended before it truly began
He is gone

When you speak to his mother
Do not murmur platitudes of sorrow and grief
Rather, rejoice in past experiences and unconditional love that transcends this earthly plane
And will stand the test of this trying time
And awaits until their hearts and their hands are joined once more

Do not look for him here
At this place where he worshipped and found comfort
Say a prayer in his absence and celebrate
He is gone to laugh with friends
He is gone to dance on the wind
He is gone to sing in the heavenly choir
He is gone to run with the angels
He is gone to meet his God.