In watching the funeral of Rep. John Lewis today at the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, I was struck by how basically similar the content was among the many speakers, all but one.When the Reverend James M. Lawson (92-years old) remembered all those years that bracketed his time of friendship with his friend John, he spoke to the complete man as one would of a good friend. Kind words, forceful words, words of fond remembrance.Rev. Lawson chose well when he quoted the poem "Meaning" by Czeslaw Milosz (1980 Nobel Prize For Literature) to characterize the journey of John Lewis through life and now death, and of a willingness to speak up for what is right. The words of this poem could be said of anyone who labors for what is right, even of you and of me, and these words are well worth a revisit:
"Meaning" .. by Czeslaw Milosz
When I die, I will see the lining of the world.The other side, beyond bird, mountain, sunset.The true meaning, ready to be decoded.What never added up will add Up,What was incomprehensible will be comprehended.
- And if there is no lining to the world?If a thrush on a branch is not a sign,But just a thrush on the branch? If night and dayMake no sense following each other?And on this earth there is nothing except this earth?
- Even if that is so, there will remainA word wakened by lips that perish,A tireless messenger who runs and runsThrough interstellar fields, through the revolving galaxies,And calls out, protests, screams.