For my Aunt Helen Jantzen, at your Crossroads of Life and Death

You Have .......

You have walked life’s road, lo, these many years
together in body and heart;
You have shared the dreams, the joys and the tears
of two lives that now must part.

You have been called to that test we are all called to take
when a spirit you must release;
You have been called to the shores of a mighty lake
where that spirit will find it’s peace.

You have reason to take the time to grieve
and release your husband for life;
You have reason to know that what you believe
will sustain his widowed wife.

You have walked the valleys so shadowed and still,
with nary a trace of light;
You have climbed those mountains of the human will,
that have proved life’s road so right.

You have tested the boundaries of spiritual thought,
and found that no boundaries exist;
You have learned together what the Spirit has taught,
and your lives did this truth consist.

You have traveled those rivers through the canyons of life
where the current runs swift and deep;
You have tasted together the victories so rife,
and those memories you now must keep.

You have given much through the months and years
of a life you have shared from your heart;
You have sown those seeds through your many tears,
and those seeds have bloomed from the start.

You have been given the blessing of long years shared,
through so many fine things to recall;
You have been given the strength of a spirit paired
with a Creator who cares for it all.

You have been given much through those halls of Time,
and much you should now recall;
You have memories of life no words can rhyme,
and your heart will remember them all.

You have, you see, that privilege of grief
and the healing that it will bring;
You have the gift of Time, and Time’s relief,
that will cause your heart to sing.

You have the chords of that song buried deep inside,
and it’s notes will yet be heard;
You have God’s assurance running deep and wide,
that the chorus will eternity gird.

You have .......

Love, Honor, and Respect Always,
Your nephew,
Menno Kenneth Matthies
July 22, 1996

Author's Bio: 

For almost forty years of his life Ken Matthies has been a writer and chronicler of life expressed in poetic form, following the family tradition laid down by his grandfather before him.

Faced with the dramatically life altering experience of his helicopter pilot daughter’s sudden death in 2002 he has grown to also become a literary author of true events based on his own life. Though grief opened his literary doors it is the Light of Love and Memories supplying the fuel of inspiration to write through them.

As a second-chance dad given the opportunity to verbally share his life stories with his newly rediscovered daughter it was she who told him that she believed him to be a ‘worthy man’ after having heard them, and who encouraged him that they should be shared in written form beyond her own life – not yet knowing as she said it that she was soon to leave him behind. As a bereaved father and writer learning how to live life again in the Light of his own Love and Memories of his daughter, he writes those stories now as a testament to her belief and faith in their value.

His full length book entitled "How to Survive the Death of a Child - A Father's Story of Healing Light" was the first of these stories which he wrote in the Light of those Love and Memories.

He lives in the solitude and grandeur of a tiny southern Yukon village with his Tlingit native wife Skoehoeteen and the successor to their venerable old Tahltan bear dog Clancy Underfoot, who now happily awaits them at the Rainbow Bridge in Doggy Heaven. She’s a new female puppy named Hlinukts Seew which means ‘Sweet Rain’ in the Tlingit language, a wonderful phonetic variation in memory of Clancy’s name who was also called C.U. for short. It’s a good place to tell those stories from.

You can read more of Ken's writings and find his Amazon Kindle book at