Give Me My Flowers Today

Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

I don’t usually post on Saturdays but on discovering a dear blogger friend’s death at the same time the world is mourning Earl “DMX” Simmons, a thought struck me.

“I just wish we could love people when they live the way we do when they die.”

As I scrolled through my LinkedIn page (and I am rarely on LinkedIn), I came across this post and was surprised to learn of Sue Vincent’s passing. 

I know Sue from her promotional posts for authors and her generosity in opening up her space to give others time to shine. I’ve been featured on her blog a few times, and each time that we emailed, she was always welcoming to have me. 

I feel sadness about Sue because I have not been as immersed in the blogging community as I used to be. My schedule is crazy these days, and I have not had the time to dedicate myself to my own blog, much less engage with others. On searching her name, I found tons of posts dedicated to her and posts she wrote about her illness. I am so very sorry for missing it all. 

I also want to note that Sue was a poet, and with it being National Poetry Month, I dedicate this post to her honor.

As per the title of this post, I want to remind us to give people their flowers while they live.

If there is someone you appreciate or someone you love, or someone who has added value to your life in any way, I encourage you to make it known to them now.

Why now? 

Why not now?

Photo by Mel on Unsplash

Last June 2020 was the last time I saw my mother alive. I had taken a quick trip to Chicago to celebrate the life of another person I knew who had passed and stopped by my mom’s place. I was literally only passing through. My husband had to make a run, so I ended up staying with my mother for longer than I had anticipated.

At the time, I was irritated Moshe was taking so long to come back. I did not see how much of a blessing it was he took this run.

Before I left, I put a necklace on her neck that I had meant to ship but never got the chance to. As I snapped it on her, I kissed her cheek and left. This wasn’t out of the ordinary. It is something I did all the time, kiss her cheek and tell her I loved her. The difference this time is I didn’t know this would be the last time I would do it, as she would pass on in September.

I have been away from home since 2009, when we moved to Louisiana. I now live in Georgia, but most of my family still lives in Chicago. That said, I didn’t see my mom daily because we did not live in the same city. If I had not come to Chicago that June, the last memory I would have of her would have been December of 2019 when we celebrated her 60th, and unknown to us, her last birthday.

Photo by Jeremy Yap on Unsplash

We never know when will be the last time we see or speak to someone, but we still take it for granted. We still treat each other like every day is promised. We still love people more in death than we do in life. We see this every time a celebrity passes.

I hope that one day this will change.

I hope that one day we will live with such immense gratitude that hindsight is no longer 20/20 because we will see things clearly at the moment.

I’ll leave you with this excerpt from If My Books Shall Die:

“Give me my flowers today

and accept the life I offer you

in the form of metaphors on silver platters,

for I am feeding you with silver spoons

and all you’ve got to do is eat.

I offer you the best of me.

And when I am dead

no longer among the living

crack open a book written by me

and feel my breath on your skin.

Hear my voice resurrect

from inside an ancient pen,

Watch my tongue dance.

See my lips move

and witness passion soar 

from beyond the grave.

If my books shall die

then my words did not really contain life.

But if my books shall live

What are you waiting for?

Go to your bookshelf,

resurrect me

and carry

my bones.”


Read the full poem in I am Soul

Don’t Forget to Enter this Year’s Poetry Contest. Click Here to Learn How.


PS. I am not a fan of the new WordPress editor. I like the ease of embedding tweets, but I think the blocks are unnecessarily complicated.

Published by

Yecheilyah

I write Black Historical Fiction, and Soulful Poetry for the freedom of all people. Visit me on the web at yecheilyahysrayl.com/

6 thoughts on “Give Me My Flowers Today”

  1. I have often thought about how we don’t tell people how much we appreciate and love them while still alive. I wrote a poem as a tribute to Sue Vincent. I intended to publish it before she died so she could read it, but sadly, she passed before I managed post it.
    The same with Prince Philip. Tributes are flooding in now he’s no longer with us. It would have been nice for him to know how much people appreciated all his work throughout his life.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that celebrities, for the most part, are honored when they are alive because people tend to put them on pedestals and treat them as gods/goddesses.

      I didn’t get to mention it in the post, but I do want to acknowledge that I understand death brings out more of a realization and appreciation for who people were and the influence they have had on our lives, and I want to make it clear that to feel this way doesn’t mean we didn’t feel that way about them in life. Sometimes it just means we are mourning.

      Still, if we appreciate people more in life, I think it could make the mourning process a little less painful.

      Like

  2. Sue was good people and always ready and willing to help other authors. I’m sure her illness was daunting, but ever since she shared the information last September, I was moved and inspired with her courage and determination. She had some low points, but she kept coming back with courage and dignity… until the day Stuart posted she was gone. She is missed.

    For most of our lives, my Mom told my sibs and me to give her flowers while she was living, not after she was gone. And we did. The nine of us had no problem making Mom’s living room look like a florist’s shop! 😀 There were trees and plants at her service but only a handful of flowers, because those who knew her well had given her flowers when she could appreciate them.

    We do live life too fast and take too much for granted. We should tell our family and close friends what they mean to us while we’re able to share the love. No one should ever be loved more in death than in life.

    Liked by 1 person

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